Document Type : Original Article
PhD Candidate, Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, School of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran
PhD Candidate, Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, School of Medicine, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
Assistant Professor, Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, School of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran
BACKGROUND AND AIM: Dental caries is considered the most common chronic disease in childhood and decayed, missing, and filled teeth (DMFT) index is regarded as a valuable prognostic factor for oral and dental health in adulthood. Thus, the aim of this study was to describe the prevalence of DMFT and self-care behavior among 7-10-year-old students in Quchan, a city in northeast Iran.
METHODS: A total of 528 students aged 7-10 years old, selected through cluster random sampling, participated in this descriptive cross-sectional study. Demographic information including age, gender, parental educational level, and frequency of tooth brushing was obtained from the participants; DMFT index was recorded after careful oral examination. Data were analyzed using one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA), independent samples t-test, and chi-square test.
RESULTS: In this study, the ratio of girls to boys was 1:1. The overall mean of DMFT was 4.70 ± 3.16, with no significant difference regarding the gender. However, different age ranges presented significant fluctuation in the mean of DMFT value with the significantly highest value observed in 9-year-old and the lowest in 10-year-old students. Moreover, 8.92% of the participants were caries-free (CF), with a significant dominance of girls. The significantly higher CF index was observed in 7-year-old students as compared to the other ages. However, daily tooth brushing or parental educational level showed no significant correlation with DMFT or CF indices.
CONCLUSION: Due to the high prevalence of DMFT reported in this study, a comprehensive plan should be developed to promote children’s oral health. This issue reinforces the need for preventive programs in general policies of the county.