Objective: To evaluate the effect of social and behavioral factors on the experience of dental caries among adolescent school children in Bengaluru City, India.
Design of Study: Cross sectional study.
Place and Duration of the Study: Primary schools of Bengaluru City, between November 2012 and March 2013.
Methodology: A cross sectional study was conducted on 11 year old 814 adolescents attending upper primary schools of Bengaluru city and their parents. A separate interview was conducted on behavioral and social factors for adolescent students and parents, respectively. Using mouth mirrors and CPI probes under natural light, dental caries were registered according to WHO criteria. Descriptive analysis, bivariate analysis using chi-square tests and t-tests were included in the statistical analysis. Later, logistic regression analysis was performed on the variables.
Results: Dental caries experience of the adolescents studied was associated with social factors such as occupation of the mother (OR=1.9; 95 percent CI=1.3-2.3), presence of social support for mother during adulthood (OR=2.1; 95 percent CI=1.4-2.0), possession of television (TV)/computer at home (OR= 1.6; 95 percent =0.9-3.0); and behavioral factors such as adolescents who consume less than one. It was also shown that parents giving snacks as a reward to adolescents who fulfill their wishes were strongly associated with adolescent dental caries experience (OR=2.34; 95 percent CI=1.2-3.4) TV influence on snacking, tooth brushing frequency and not using fluoridated dentifrice was also significantly associated with the experience of dental caries.
Conclusion: In shaping more proximal behavioral habits such as snacking among 11-year-old adolescents, social factors such as maternal occupation and social support play an important role. Such interactions eventually affected the experience of dental caries in this age group.
Author (s) Details
Dr. Sushi Kadanakuppe
Department of Public Health Dentistry, V. S. Dental College and Hospital, Bengaluru, India.
Dr. S. S. Hiremath Department of Public Health Dentistry, The Oxford Dental College and Hospital, Bengaluru, India.