Article Text

Download PDFPDF

Global problems
P2-488 Dental caries in a Portuguese sample of schoolchildren
  1. N Veiga,
  2. O Amaral,
  3. J Pereira,
  4. C Pereira
  1. CI & DETS, Health School, Polytechnic Institute of Viseu, Viseu, Portugal


Background Dental caries is the most prevalent disease worldwide. The objective of this study was to determine the mean of decayed/missing/filled in permanent teeth (DMF-T index) and in primary teeth (dmf-t index) and verify the association with oral health behaviours and socio-demographic factors in children aged 5–12 years old.

Participants and methods A sample of 605 children aged 5–12 years old, attending twenty-seven public schools in Sátão, Portugal, was enrolled in this cross-sectional study. Clinical examinations of oral health status were carried out according to WHO criteria to determine the prevalence of dental caries and the DMF-T and dmf-t. Structured questionnaires for interviewing children on oral health behaviours and socio-demographic factors were used.

Results Prevalence of dental caries is 72.1%. Dental caries experience was 0.93 DMF-T and 2.99 dmf-t, higher among the female sex (3.04 vs 2.93; p=0.02). The total DMF index was associated with residence area (rural=4.18 vs urban=3.43; p<0.01), parents' level of education (0–4 years=4.29; 5–6 years=4.15; 7–12 years=3.69; >12 years=1.73; p<0.01) and dental appointments in the last twelve months (no=4.24 vs yes=3.33; p<0.01).

Conclusions We found a high prevalence of dental caries in primary and permanent teeth, associated with socio-demographic factors. Oral health programmes and primary preventive strategies should be considered.

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.