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Oral health impact, dental caries, and oral health behaviors among the National Cadets Corps in South India



Asst. Prof. Kalyana Chakravarthy Pentapati, Department of Public Health Dentistry, Manipal College of Dental Sciences, Manipal University, Madhav Nagar, Manipal 576104, India.

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The aim of the present study was to assess the oral health impact and to evaluate the association between socioeconomic status, oral health behaviors, dental caries experience, and oral health impacts among children enrolled in the National Cadets Corps.


A cross-sectional survey was conducted among 389 male cadets aged between 13 and 15 years. Sociodemographic and oral health behavior-related information was collected using a self-administered questionnaire. The Child–Oral Impacts on Daily Performances (OIDP) Index was used to assess the oral impacts. The cadets were clinically examined for caries experience using decayed, missing, filled tooth index.


A total of 359 children completed all stages of the survey. The mean age of the children was 13.96 ± 0.6 years. Fifty-five percent of the participants experienced at least one impact in the last 3 months. The mean OIDP score for the population was 12.13 ± 5.85. The most prevalent impact was difficulty in eating (37%), and the least affected daily performance was social contact (17%). Dental attendance and caries experience were significant predictors of oral impacts.


The present study revealed that oral health had a significant impact on quality of life. Caries experience and past dental visits were associated with oral health-related quality of life among this study population.

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