Usability and usage of an online eHealth module concerning dental hygiene for patients with bipolar disorder. A cross-sectional study.
Velde, D. de
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Title: Usability and usage of an online eHealth module concerning dental hygiene for patients with bipolar disorder. A cross-sectional study. Background: Bipolar disorder is a mood disorder with a life-time prevalence of 1.3% that is the sixth leading cause of disability worldwide. It causes recurrent episodes of depression and (hypo)mania, separated by intervals of normal mood. Patients with bipolar disorder have an increased risk for dental problems, which can be caused by symptoms of the disorder or the psychopharmaceuticals they use. Educating patients with bipolar disorder on oral care is essential. In general, eHealth interventions are accessible, convenient and cost-effective. However, uncertainty remains about whether emerging eHealth interventions are suitable for reaching individuals with serious mental illnesses including bipolar disorder. In 2018, an eHealth module concerning education of dental health care was developed for patients with mental disorders. The module is currently in its pilot phase. Aim: The aim of this study was to evaluate the usability and usage of the online eHealth module ‘Healthy Teeth’ for patients with bipolar disorder using psychopharmaceuticals. Method: The study has a cross-sectional design. Questionnaires were obtained among adult patients with bipolar disorder using psychopharmaceuticals, in treatment by a Dutch mental health care organisation. Log data of the module was collected. Results: The module scores above average on usability (median=85.0, ICR=12.5). The actual usage of the module is low; 26 respondents completed the module. The time patients took to complete the module varied widely; from 6 minutes to 20 days. Conclusion: This study suggests that the module ‘Healthy Teeth’ is usable for patients with bipolar disorder using psychopharmaceuticals. However, the actual usage of the module was low. Recommendations: To increase the usage of the module there is a need to raise awareness amongst practitioners and patients on the benefits of the module and eHealth (interventions) in general.