Effectiveness of an oral health program for mothers and their infants

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Abstract

Background.

The baby oral health program (bOHP) provides pregnant women and their future babies with oral care.

Aim.

To assess the bOHP effectiveness by comparing caries prevalence in infants enrolled and not enrolled in the oral health program (OHP).

Design.

Mothers who had been invited to participate in the bOHP from 2006 to 2009 were contacted. Two groups were formed: 87 pairs of mothers and infants who effectively participated in the OHP (G1) and 107 pairs who did not (G2). Mothers and infants were given a dental examination. Socio-economic status (SES) and education level (EL) questionnaires were completed. t-tests and multivariate logistic regression were used in analyzing data.

Results.

Statistically significant differences were observed in the mean age of mothers (G1 = 33.8 years; G2 = 35.6 years; P = 0.015) and mean decayed, missed and filled surface (DMFS) score (G1 = 24.71; G2 = 32.58; P < 0.001), not in SES (P = 0.758) and EL (P = 0.109). Mean age and mean dmfs scores of G1 and G2 children were 4.2 and 4.4 years (P = 0.068), and 0.25 and 4.12 (P < 0.001), respectively. The odds ratio (OR) for children in G2 to develop dentine lesions, as opposed to those in G1, was 48.56.

Conclusion.

The bOHP was effective in preventing caries in infants enrolled in the program.

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