The purpose of this investigation is to evaluate the physicochemical properties of saliva, such as salivary flow
rate, volume, pH and buffer capacity and the levels of salivary sodium, potassium, calcium and phosphate ions in caries-free
and caries-active children.
The results revealed that when all these parameters were compared among the caries-free and caries-active children, the flow
rate, volume, pH and buffering capacity were slightly reduced in the caries-active group and this was statistically significant,
whereas the calcium, potassium and sodium concentrations were increased in the caries-free group in a statistically
Material and methods
The present study included 100 healthy children aged 7-12 years
belonging to a rural population from Thiruvallur district (in Chennai, India), who were divided into Group 1 caries-free and
Group 2 caries-active children, of 50 children each. Unstimulated saliva was collected by draining method and flow rate and
volume were determined. The samples were then analysed for pH and buffering capacity using a manual pH meter. Sodium,
potassium, and calcium concentration were analysed by Flame Photometer. Phosphates were analysed by Fiske and
Subbarow's colorimetric method. Data were then statistically analysed using the Student's t-test (unpaired).
Within the limitation of this study, we can conclude that alterations in the
physicochemical properties of saliva such as increased salivary flow rate, volume, calcium, sodium and potassium
concentrations play a major role in the development of resistance to caries.
Vol.13 – n.2/2012
Harvard: T. Tayab, K. Rai, A. V. Kumari (2012) "Evaluating the physicochemical properties and inorganic elements of saliva in caries-free and caries-active children. An in vivo study", European Journal of Paediatric Dentistry, 13(2), pp107-112. doi:
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