Influence of Parental Socioeconomic Status on Caries Prevalence Among Children Seen at the University College Hospital, Ibadan
Background: Dental caries is a lifetime disease and its sequelae have
been found to constitute health problems of immense proportion in children. Environmental factors such as culture, socioeconomic status, lifestyle and dietary pattern can have a great impact on cariesresistance
or caries-development in a child.
Objective: The present study was conducted to evaluate the relationship between dental caries and socioeconomic status of children attending paediatric dental clinic in UCH Ibadan.
Methods: Socio-demographic data for each child that attended paediatric dental clinic, UCH Ibadan within a period of one year was obtained and recorded as they presented in the dental clinic, followed by oral examination for each of them in the dental clinic to detect decayed, missing and filled deciduous and permanent teeth (dmft and DMFT respectively).
Results: The mean dmft and DMFT score for the 209 children seen within period of study were 1.58 + 2.4 and 0.63+1.3 respectively. Highest caries prevalence (46.9%) was found within the high social class while the caries prevalence in middle and low social class were 40.5% and 12.6% respectively. The highest dmft/DMFT of >7 was recorded in two children belonging to high social class. The difference in dmft in the three social classes was statistically significant (x 2 = 51.86,p= 0.008) but for DMFT, it was not statistically significant (x2 = 6.92, p = 0.991).
Conclusion: Caries experience was directly related to socio-economic
status of the parents of the studied children with highest caries prevalence in high and middle socioeconomic classes.
Keywords: Dental Caries and Socioeconomic status.