Background: Oral health literacy is one of the factors known to affect oral health. The results of prior studies indicate that Taiwanese lack accurate oral health knowledge and skills. Assessing the understanding of Taiwanese of the various aspects of oral health literacy is necessary to explore their ability to access, process, and understand basic oral health information and to make informed health decisions. Purpose: To understand the oral health literacy of mid-aged and older adults living in the community and to identify the related factors that significantly affect their oral health literacy. Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted on a convenience sample of 263 mid-aged and older adults living in the community. Each participant completed a demographics datasheet and the Oral Health Literacy-Adult Questionnaire. The survey data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, independent t test, one-way analysis of variance test, and Pearson's correlation. Results: The reading comprehension domain earned the lowest average score, indicating that reading comprehension of oral-health-related information should be strengthened in the mid-age/older population. Age was negatively associated with oral health literacy, while educational level and financial status was positively associated with oral health literacy. Furthermore, the participants who scored higher in oral health literacy were better able to accurately choose the oral hygiene tools that best suited their needs. Conclusions: The results of this study suggest that strategies aiming to promote oral health literacy among community-dwelling mid-aged and older adults should focus particularly on strengthening reading comprehension abilities and on those of older age, lower education level, and lower financial status.
- Community mid-aged and older adults
- Health literacy
- Oral health
ASJC Scopus subject areas