To examine the association of contextual and individual determinants with non‐utilization of dental services among Brazilian adults.
Data were from adults aged 35‐44 years (N = 7,265) from the 2010 Brazilian Oral Health Survey (SB Brasil Project). Non‐utilization of dental services was assessed whether the individual has never had a dental visit over the whole life time. Independent variables were selected according to Andersen’s behavioral model. Contextual variables included Human Development Index‐longevity (HDI‐Longevity) (predisposing demographic), HDI‐Education and Gini index (predisposing social), integration of oral health teams into Primary Care (enabling health policy), and HDI‐Income (enabling financing). Individual data were age and sex (predisposing demographic), ethnicity and schooling (predisposing social), family monthly income (predisposing enabling), perceived dental treatment (perceived need), and decayed teeth (evaluated need). The relationship of contextual and individual variables with non‐utilization of dental services was assessed through multilevel logistic regression analysis to estimate odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CI).
The prevalence of non‐utilization of dental services was 4.7 percent. Adults living in cities with high HDI‐Income were less likely to never have a dental visit. The odds of non‐utilization of dental services were lower for adults living in cities with high HDI‐Longevity. Sex, skin color, dental treatment needs, poor socioeconomic characteristics, perceived dental treatment needs, and decayed teeth were also associated with non‐utilization of dental services.
The results suggest that contextual enabling and predisposing factors, individual sociodemographic, and needs‐related characteristics influence non‐utilization of dental services by Brazilian adults.