DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18203/2349-3291.ijcp20193719

Dental caries and oral hygiene practices among school children in Chennai, India: a cross sectional study

Shanthi Ramesh, S. Sundari

Abstract


Background: Dental caries is commonly seen among school children. The World Health Organization has stated it to be one of the leading non-communicable diseases. Objective: To study the prevalence of dental caries among school children and to study the oral hygiene practices in the occurrence of dental caries.

Methods: This cross-sectional study included 307 school children aged 10-15 years. Each child was asked about the dental hygiene practices and was examined for the presence of caries.

Results: The prevalence of dental caries among school children was found to be 48.9 % with the 95% CI of 43.3% - 54.4%. The prevalence of dental caries was high among children 10-12 years of age 95(53.6%) compared to 55 (42.3%) among children in the age group of 13-15 years (p=0.05). Daily sweet consumption was significantly associated with a higher prevalence 40 (63.5%) of dental caries (p=0.01). Children not consuming vegetables and fruits everyday had a higher prevalence 76.5% dental caries (p = 0.03). Children who are not practicing night brushing had a higher prevalence of 112 (52.8%) of caries (p=0.04). The study showed that only 17.3% of the children visited a dental health care service.

Conclusion: Authors found the prevalence of dental caries to be high. Health education regarding the importance of good oral hygiene practices such as night brushing, diet modification and periodic dental visits to all the school children will play a major role in the prevention of dental caries.


Keywords


Dental caries, Oral hygiene practices, Prevalence, School children

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