Purpose: Pregnancy is a state particularly sensitive to oral pathologies (periodontal and decay). The oral health status of pregnant women can have an impact on the outcome of the pregnancy and the oral health of the child to come. As in the general population, the oral health of pregnant women is socially determined and dependent on psychosocial factors, including factors related to health behaviours. Research into the determinants of oral health in pregnant women will allow a better understanding of the mechanisms of action specific to this period of perinatality.
Keywords: health literacy, knowledge-attitude-pratice, oral health, pregnant women and child, scoping review
Materials and Methods: The methodology of a scoping review was selected with the objective of investigating the contribution of knowledge, attitudes, practices (KAP) and oral health literacy on pregnant women’s oral health.
Results: Of the 67 articles selected, 52 studied the ‘knowledge’ component, 27 the ‘attitude’ (including the perception and beliefs concerning health), and 54 the ‘practice’ component, while 6 articles examined literacy. The KAP components were studied in relation to socioeconomic determinants, oral health status, healthcare utilisation and oral health literacy. The level of oral health literacy of pregnant women is strongly related to their living environment and socioprofessional level which influences their attitudes and practices. Woman’s oral health practices before pregnancy can be a predictor of her practices during pregnancy.
Conclusion: The complex nature of the attitude component (locus of control, sense of self-efficacy, perceived importance) is little discussed. The heterogeneity and exhaustiveness of topics related to KAP raises the question of how to more accurately assess KAP in pregnant women in a valid, reproducible, and transferable manner and the need to build a structured oral health consensus body of work. This review is a first step towards identifying the psychosocial factors that are essential for developing a model of educational intervention in oral health that combines the process of behavioural change and decision making while taking into account the concept of empowerment, and with the aim of reducing social inequalities in health.