ASSESSMENT OF CARIES RISK IN TODDLERS, ACTA UNIVERSITATIS OULUENSIS D Medica 1059
|Kustantaja:||Oulun yliopisto|| |
|Sijainti:||Print Tietotalo|| |
|Tekijät:||OLLILA PÄIVI|| |
Dental caries in toddlers was studied in relation to several risk factors which were also determined by salivary tests in a longitudinal design. Another specific aim was to reveal the effect of prolonged pacifier sucking on caries development.
The study population consisted of 183 pre-school children. At the baseline, salivary microbiological tests were taken from children whose average age was 2.5 years. Risk factors for colonisation of salivary lactobacilli and yeasts were determined from a questionnaire filled in by the parents. At the 2-year follow-up, caries in primary teeth was studied against the possible risk factors recorded at the baseline. At the 7-year follow-up, the risk factors identified at the age of two were analysed against caries development in primary molars and in first permanent molars. Also the long-term predictive value of salivary microbiological tests was investigated.
At the baseline, the use of pacifier and nocturnal use of nursing bottle were associated with colonisation of salivary lactobacilli and yeasts. Prolonged pacifier sucking and use of nursing bottle at nights were shown to be associated with caries development in children at the 2-year follow-up. Consumption of sweets, lack of daily tooth brushing and nocturnal use of nursing bottle at the age of two were associated with caries onset in both primary and permanent molars at the seven-year follow-up. The use of fluoride tablets reduced the risk of caries onset in primary molars. Children who were colonised by salivary lactobacilli or yeasts at the baseline were susceptible to caries in primary molars. Early colonisation of lactobacilli was associated with caries in permanent molars.
The results suggest that the risk of caries is possible to assess in toddlers by identifying cariesrelated habits early, already at the age of two. Microbiological tests may also have some value. Assessment of caries risk in toddlers enables both prevention and early intervention, and thereby prevention of caries development in children.