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Keywords:

  • oral health;
  • paediatric dentistry;
  • quality of life

Abanto J, Carvalho TS, Mendes FM, Wanderley MT, Bönecker M, Raggio DP. Impact of oral diseases and disorders on oral health-related quality of life of preschool children. Community Dent Oral Epidemiol 2011; 39: 105–114. © 2010 John Wiley & Sons A/S

Abstract –  Background:  The presence of oral diseases and disorders can produce an impact on the quality of life of preschool children and their parents, affecting their oral health and well-being. However, socioeconomic factors could confound this association, but it has not been yet tested at this age.

Objective:  To assess the impact of early childhood caries (ECC), traumatic dental injuries (TDI) and malocclusions on the oral health-related quality of life (OHRQoL) of children between 2 and 5 years of age adjusted by socioeconomic factors.

Methods:  Parents of 260 children answered the Early Childhood Oral Health Impact Scale (ECOHIS) (six domains) on their perception of the children’s OHRQoL and socioeconomic conditions. Two calibrated dentists (κ > 0.8) examined the severity of ECC according to dmft index, and children were categorized into: 0 = caries free; 1–5 = low severity; ≥6 = high severity. TDI and malocclusions were examined according to Andreasen & Andreasen (1994) classification and for the presence or absence of three anterior malocclusion traits (AMT), respectively. OHRQoL was measured through ECOHIS domain and total scores, and poisson regression was used to associate the different factors with the outcome.

Results:  In each domain and overall ECOHIS scores, the severity of ECC showed a negative impact on OHRQoL (P < 0.001). TDI and AMT did not show a negative impact on OHRQoL nor in each domain (P > 0.05). The increase in the child’s age, higher household crowding, lower family income and mother working out of home were significantly associated with OHRQoL (P < 0.05). The multivariate adjusted model showed that the high severity of ECC (RR = 3.81; 95% CI = 2.66, 5.46; P < 0.001) was associated with greater negative impact on OHRQoL, while high family income was a protective factor for OHRQoL (RR = 0.93; 95% CI = 0.87, 0.99; P < 0.001).

Conclusions:  The severity of ECC and a lower family income had a negative impact on the OHRQoL of preschool children and their parents.