The aim of this study was to verify whether socioeconomic determinants, such as parents’ educational level, family income and dental service attendance by children, are associated with the presence of caries among an Italian population of children.
Material and methods
An observational retrospective study was carried out in a population of children aged 4–14 years who visited the Paediatric Dentistry Department of the University of Perugia, Italy. Children were stratified according to familial socioeconomic level (father’s and mother’s educational level, family income) and dental service attendance of children. Age- and sex-adjusted odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) were calculated by means of multivariate logistic regression models.
A sample of 231 children (mean age 8.1 yrs, SD 2.6; 127 males, 104 females) was recruited. One hundred and sixty three (70.46%) children in the study had caries. Caries presence in children was higher in children where the mothers’ educational level was lower (OR =6.1; 95% CI = 3.1 to 12.7), in children where the fathers’ educational level was lower (OR =2.9; 95% CI =1.6 to 5.5) and in children with lower family income (OR = 9.9; 95% 95% CI = 5.1 to 20.1). No statistically significant difference were observed in terms of caries presence between the children who were visited at least once by a dentist and children who were not previously seen by a dental practitioner (OR = 0.8; 95% CI = 0.4 to 1.6).
Socioeconomic level was an important predictor of caries presence among children. Both low income and low parental educational level were related to an increased presence of caries, whereas previous dental visits experience did not affect caries presence in children.
Vol.18 – n.1/2017
Harvard: S. Cianetti, G. Lombardo, E. Lupatelli, G. Rossi, I. Abraha, S. Pagano, L. Paglia (2017) "Dental caries, parents educational level, family income and dental service attendance among children in Italy", European Journal of Paediatric Dentistry, 18(1), pp15-18. doi: 10.23804/ejpd.2017.18.01.03
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