Influence of dietary habits on oral hygiene in children

The objective of this study was to determine whether there was a correlation between children’s oral hygiene and dietary habits, and whether this relationship changed through different age groups. Additionally, we analysed changes in dietary habits and oral hygiene index by age groups. A total of 102 children aged between 0 and 18 years participated in the study, with approximately the same ratio of female and male respondents. Children were divided into three groups according to age: preschool age children (0 to 6 years), young school-age children (7 to 10 years) and older school-age children (11 to 18 years). Two short questionnaires were prepared and participants could select only one answer to the question asked. The questionnaire on oral hygiene consisted of six questions, and the questionnaire on dietary habits of children of seven questions. In order to replace questioned parameters with one variable, we formed two variables, dietary habits (DH) and oral hygiene index (OHI). The score was calculated based on the responses from the questionnaire and children were classified into the group with either good or poor oral hygiene and in the group with either good or poor dietary habits. The results of this study showed a statistically significant difference in oral hygiene index among different age groups; it was highest in children of the youngest age (up to 6 years), and lower in children in the other two age groups. Analysis of age and dietary habits of children was related to the existence of statistically significant effects of age on dietary habits, with one becoming worse with age. No statistically significant correlation was found between the oral hygiene index and dietary habits of children. In addition, the correlation of oral hygiene and dietary habits was not connected with the age of children. Key words: DIET; ORAL HYGIENE; PEDIATRIC DENTISTRY
Category: Original scientific paper
Volume: Vol. 64, No 1, january - march 2020
Authors: Martina Batinić, Rebecca Bašić, Sanja Kolarić, Dubravka Negovetić-Vranić
Reference work: Paediatr Croat. 2020;64:28-34

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