September 2010

Volume 27, Issue 3

Social differences in tooth decay occurrence in a sample of children aged 3 to 5 in North-East Italy

Authors: R.Ferro C. Cecchin A. Besostri A. Olivieri E. Stellini S. Mazzoleni
doi: 10.1922/CDH_2421Ferro04


Objective: To correlate the occurrence of tooth decay with a social class indicator (occupational level) and the immigrant status in a sample of pre-school children in Veneto region. Basic research design: Cross-sectional survey. Clinical setting: Twenty nursery schools in the area of Health District n.15. Participants: A total of 1,410 children aged 3 to 5 years old visited between September 2005–May 2006. Outcomes: Occurrence of dental caries into dentine threshold was made visually and confirmed with a probe when necessary by two calibrated examiners. Information on immigrant status and occupational level of parents was obtained by a questionnaire. Children were categorized as immigrant or non-immigrant on the basis of their mother’s country of origin. Means and standard deviation were calculated for continuous variables; for categorical variables the results were provided as proportions. Comparisons between groups were made using Pearson chi-square test. The association between caries occurrence and the independent variables gender, age, immigrant status and family social class was evaluated by means of a logistic regression model. Results: Caries occurrence was higher among children from lower social class families (1.7 ± 3.2) than among children from higher social class (0.8±2.1). The prevalence of dental caries in immigrant preschool children was significantly higher than in indigenous ones (15% vs 40%; p = 0.000) while the severity in immigrants was almost 4 times higher (2.2±3.6 vs 0.6±1.8). Conclusions: Our data on preschoolers confirm the worldwide literature shared statement that social class as well as immigration status are determinants of oral health. Key words: Italian pre-school children, inequalities, socioeconomic factors, tooth decay experience


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Editorial - The challenges of designing and evaluating complex interventions 130-132 Download
Plaque, caries level and oral hygiene habits in young patients receiving orthodontic treatment 133-138 Download
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Oral health and treatment needs of institutionalized chronic psychiatric patients in Istanbul, Turkey. 151-157 Download
Barriers to oral health care amongst different social classes in India. 158-162 Download
Social differences in tooth decay occurrence in a sample of children aged 3 to 5 in North-East Italy 163-166 Download
Child oral health concerns amongst parents and primary care givers in a Sure Start Local Programme 167-171 Download
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