Prevalence and severity of dental caries in school students aged 6-12 years in Mafraq governorate: Northeast of Jordan

Document Type : Original Article(s)


1 Associate Professor, Department of Conservative Dentistry, University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan

2 Senior Specialist, Department of Pediatric dentistry, Ministry of Health, Amman, Jordan

3 Specialist, Department of periodontology, Ministry of Health, Amman, Jordan

4 Senior Specialist, Department of Periodontology, Royal Medical Service, Amman, Jordan

5 RN/Head of Planning, Department of Research and Information, National Woman’s Health Care Center, University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan

6 National Women’s Health Care Center, RN/Head of Planning, University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan

7 Department of Statistics, Statistical Analysis Division, University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan


BACKGROUND AND AIM: Dental caries is a chronic disease with a high prevalence despite its preventability. Untreated dental caries can cause substantial pain and suffering, and imposes a significant public health and economic burden. Our aim was to determine how prevalent and sever dental caries are among school children between 6 to 12 years of age from a mixed population (Jordanians and Syrian refugees) at Mafraq Governorate, Northeast of Jordan, as well as to evaluate their habits with regards to oral hygiene.METHODS: The survey was a cross-sectional study conducted on 1286 public school children. All students were examined using a mirror and lit probe with a dental unit for decay-missing-fillings for deciduous teeth (dmft) and decay-missing–fillings for permanent teeth (DMFT); oral hygiene habits were also recorded.RESULTS: Among 1286 school children, 21.1% were Syrian refugees. The caries prevalence was 78.7% with dmft ranges from 2.3-4.4 and DMFT ranges from 0.4-1.8. There were significant caries indices (SiC) of 7.0 and 2.7 for deciduous teeth and permanent teeth, respectively. About 29.2 % of the students never brushed their teeth, and 93.3% did not have any previous dental treatment. All tested indicators of oral health status were worse among Syrian refugee students compared to Jordanian students, although this difference was not statistically significant.CONCLUSION: The caries prevalence in this age group in Mafraq was very high. One-third of the examined students had very high deft and DMFT scores, which reflected negligence of children oral health. Untreated dental caries was the main component of DMFT scores among the examined population, indicating lack of dental care services for those children, especially for refugees.


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