The Open Dentistry Journal

ISSN: 1874-2106 ― Volume 14, 2020

Application of Behavior Management Techniques for Paediatric Dental Patients by Tanzanian Dental Practitioners

Hassan Mohamed Kawia, Hawa Shariff Mbawalla, Febronia Kokulengya Kahabuka*
Department of Orthodontics, Paedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, School of Dentistry, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, P.O. Box 65014, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania


Background: Management of children’s behavior is an integral component of pediatric dental practice. Objective: To investigate the oral health care providers’ awareness, use and factors for choice of behavior management techniques when attending paediatric dental patients. Methods: A cross-sectional study among dental practitioners in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Data collection was done through interview using a structured questionnaire. The recorded information included: awareness and application of behavior management techniques (BMT) when attending a child dental patient, factors influencing choice of a particular technique, socio-demographics, level of professional training, working experience and facility profile. Using SPSS program version 18, frequency distributions and cross tabulations analyses were performed. Results: 74 dental practitioners participated in the study, of whom 49 (66.2%) were males and 44 (59.5%) were graduates. Most participants were aware of the behavior management techniques, ranging from 100% for Tell-Show-Do to 86% for distraction. A small proportion (9.5%) reported to have adequate skills, all of them were graduates. The use of universally accepted BMTs was reported by 65% of experienced practitioners, 61% of graduates, 59% of those reporting to have received formal training and all of those reporting to have fair/inadequate skills to apply BMTs (p= 0.01). Conclusion: Most participants were aware of BMTs, although few acknowledged having adequate skills to apply the techniques. They use BMTs during treatment of paediatric dental patients and their choice of the technique is mainly influenced by children’s factors.

Keywords: Awareness, behavior management techniques, paediatric, practitioners, professional training, Tanzania.

Article Information

Identifiers and Pagination:

Year: 2015
Volume: 9
First Page: 455
Last Page: 461
Publisher Id: TODENTJ-9-455
DOI: 10.2174/1874210601509010455

Article History:

Received Date: 9/4/2015
Revision Received Date: 30/9/2015
Acceptance Date: 31/10/2015
Electronic publication date: 31/12/2015
Collection year: 2015

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© Kawia et al. ; Licensee Bentham Open.

open-access license: This is an open access articles licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial 4.0 International Public License (CC BY-NC 4.0) (, which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided that the work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, United Nations Road, School of Dentistry, Department of Orthodontics, Paedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, 3rd Floor Room 303, P.O. Box 65014, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania; Tel: +255-22-2151135; Fax: +255-22-2150465; E-mails:,


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