Topical Area: Community and Public Health Nutrition
Objectives : To develop a valid and reliable scale to assess dental health-related nutrition attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors of low-income women.
A Dental Nutrition Attitudes, Beliefs, and Behaviors Scale was developed based on the results of a literature review of foods that affect prevalence and severity of periodontal disease. It was tested in 150 low-income women, ages 18-50 years, from the Central Texas Area. The validity of the initial scale was assessed via content validity from a panel of ten nutrition experts, and readability by six low-income women. Construct validity was determined via Exploratory Factor Analysis; internal consistency of the scale was measured by calculation of Cronbach’s alpha. The final version of the scale consisted of 21-items divided into three subscales: attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors.
Content and construct validity resulted in elimination of fourteen questions from the initial 35-item scale to create a 21-item instrument. The internal consistency for the final Dental Nutrition Attitudes, Beliefs, and Behaviors Scale was 0.802, as measured by Cronbach’s alpha coefficient. Exploratory factor analysis using varimax rotation generated three factors: Attitudes, Beliefs, and Behaviors, with total explained variance of 42.38. The scale had an excellent reliability of 0.99.
These results confirmed the validity and reliability of the new dental health-related nutrition attitudes, beliefs, and behavior scale to be utilized in low-income women.
Funding Sources : The Bess Heflin Centennial Professorship