The effect of age, sex and eye-hand coordination on the ability to predict the readiness of elementary students to learn an effective dental flossing technique Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/st74ct87f

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  • The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships between age, sex, eye-hand coordination, the time it takes individuals to learn how to manipulate dental floss between all of their teeth, and the time it takes individuals to learn how to effectively clean their teeth with dental floss. The subjects consisted of 117 elementary students from two schools in Lebanon, Oregon. Twenty-eight eight year olds, 27 ten year olds, 32 nine year olds, and 30 eleven year olds were selected from Queen Anne's and Santiam Schools. The second and fourth grade classes were selected from Santiam School, while the third and fifth grade classes were chosen from Queen Anne's School. The eye-hand coordination skills of the student were examined by using a speed and accuracy marble manipulation test called the Moore Eye-Hand Coordination Test. The scores on the test not only indicated each individual's eye-hand coordination ability, but also helped differentiate the students within the sample population so that they could be compared to other groups of elementary students. A student's ability to manipulate the dental floss between all of the teeth was determined by direct observation. Examiners observed the students while they attempted the flossing techniques and noted whether they could manipulate the floss between all of the interproximal surfaces. The amount of plaque left on one and one-half millimeter wide sections of 12 predetermined surfaces of six teeth was measured by the Flossing Performance Index. Plaque buildup was rated from zero to three, zero indicating no plaque formation while a score of three indicated that the plaque covered the entire one and one-half millimeter wide section. To pass the Flossing Performance Index a student would have had to achieve at least a 50 percent reduction in plaque from a pretest rating, and a score of 13 or less on the same index. Each student was required to practice the flossing technique until he could pass the Flossing Performance Index. Four general hypotheses were considered: Hypothesis I: There is a significant relationship between age and eye-hand coordination, flossing manipulation skill, and flossing effectiveness, Hypothesis II: There is a significant relationship between sex and eye-hand coordination, flossing manipulation skill, and flossing effectiveness. Hypothesis III: There is a significant relationship between eye-hand coordination and flossing manipulation skill, and flossing effectiveness. Hypothesis IV: Age, sex and eye-hand coordination scores, separately or in combination, are good predictors of flossing manipulation skill and flossing effectiveness. Two null hypotheses were also tested. Hypothesis V: There is no significant difference between males and females at the eight, nine, ten, and eleven year old age levels in regard to eye-hand coordination, flossing manipulation skill, and flossing effectiveness. Hypothesis VI; There is no significant difference between any of the four age groups (eight, nine, ten, and eleven year olds) in reference to eye-hand coordination, flossing manipulation skill, and flossing effectiveness. In summary, the following conclusions were made: 1. Eye-hand coordination, sex and age are related to the time it takes a student to learn how to manipulate dental floss between all of the teeth, and the time it takes a student to learn how to effectively floss his or her teeth. 2. Eye-hand coordination and age are the most critical variables in relation to the time it takes a student to learn how to manipulate dental floss between all of the teeth, and the time it takes a student to learn how to effectively floss his or her teeth. 3. The variables of eye-hand coordination, sex and age will not predict, at the 95 percent level of confidence, the exact number of days it takes a student to learn how to manipulate dental floss between all of the teeth, and the time it takes a student to learn how to effectively floss his or her teeth. 4. All eight, nine, ten and eleven year old elementary students in this investigation were able to learn how to effectively clean their teeth with dental floss within ten, seven, six, and five days, respectively. 5. Hypotheses II and IV were rejected while hypotheses I and III were not rejected. Null hypothesis V was rejected for the eight year olds on the time it took students to learn how to manipulate floss between all of the teeth, and for eleven year olds on eye-hand coordination, and on the time it took students to effectively clean the teeth with dental floss. Null hypothesis VI was rejected only for the following age groups: eight and nine, eight and ten, eight and eleven, and nine and eleven.
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