Sugar Consumption and Prevalence of Dental Decay Among Children 12-Years of Age and Younger in Rural Honduras
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Objectives: To determine the prevalence of dental caries among children 6-months to 12-years-old in rural Honduras, and to explore the hypothesis that sugar consumption is positively correlated with dental decay among children 6-months to 12-years old in rural Honduras.
Methods: An interviewer implemented a cross-sectional survey of dental health determinants using convenience sampling. The same interviewer then examined the dentition of survey participants for dental decay according to the dental caries criteria recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO).
Results: The study included a sample of 532 children from 8 rural communities. Seventy percent of children surveyed had decay of their primary dentition. The average dmft score in this population was 3.52 (SD=3.57). A logistic regression model yielded that children who eat more than 2.5 pieces of candy per day have at least twice the odds of dental decay compared to children who eat less candy.
Conclusion: These results establish that caries burden in primary dentition in these communities is higher than the WHO goal, and support the hypothesis that increased sugar consumption correlates positively to increased burden of decay.
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