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1.  Socio-demographic disparity in oral health among the poor: a cross sectional study of early adolescents in Kilwa district, Tanzania 
BMC Oral Health  2010;10:7.
Background
There is a lack of studies considering social disparity in oral health emanating from adolescents in low-income countries. This study aimed to assess socio-demographic disparities in clinical- and self reported oral health status and a number of oral health behaviors. The extent to which oral health related behaviors might account for socio-demographic disparities in oral health status was also examined.
Methods
A cross-sectional study was conducted in Kilwa district in 2008. One thousand seven hundred and forty five schoolchildren completed an interview and a full mouth clinical examination. Caries experience was recorded using WHO criteria, whilst type of treatment need was categorized using the ART approach.
Results
The majority of students were caries free (79.8%) and presented with a low need for dental treatment (89.3%). Compared to their counterparts in opposite groups, rural residents and those from less poor households presented more frequently with caries experience (DMT>0), high need for dental treatment and poor oral hygiene behavior, but were less likely to report poor oral health status. Stepwise logistic regressions revealed that social and behavioral variables varied systematically with caries experience, high need for dental treatment and poor self reported oral health. Socio-demographic disparities in oral health outcomes persisted after adjusting for oral health behaviors.
Conclusions
Socio-demographic disparities in oral health outcomes and oral health behaviors do exist. Socio-demographic disparities in oral health outcomes were marginally accounted for by oral health behaviors. Developing policies and programs targeting both social and individual determinants of oral health should be an urgent public health strategy in Tanzania.
doi:10.1186/1472-6831-10-7
PMCID: PMC2868779  PMID: 20406452
2.  Malocclusion, psycho-social impacts and treatment need: A cross-sectional study of Tanzanian primary school-children 
BMC Oral Health  2008;8:14.
Background
studies on the relationship between children's malocclusion and its psycho-social impacts are so far largely unexplored in low-income countries. This study aimed to assess the prevalence of malocclusion, reported dental problems and dissatisfaction with dental appearance among primary school children in Tanzania. The relationship of dissatisfaction with socio-demographic characteristics, clinically defined malocclusion and psychosocial impacts of dental anomalies was investigated. Orthodontic treatment need was estimated using an integrated socio-dental approach.
Method
One thousand six hundred and one children (mean age 13 yr) attending primary schools in the districts of Kinondoni and Temeke completed face to face interviews and a full mouth clinical examination. The survey instrument was designed to measure a Kiswahili translated and culturally adapted Child Oral Impact on Daily Performance (Child-OIDP) frequency score, reported dental problems, dissatisfaction with dental appearance/function and socio-demographic characteristics.
Results
The prevalence of malocclusion varied from 0.9% (deep bite) to 22.5% (midline shift) with a total of 63.8% having at least one type of anomaly. Moderate proportions of children admitted dental problems; ranging from 7% (space position) to 20% (pain). The odds ratio of having problems with teeth position, spaces, pain and swallowing if having any malocclusion were, respectively 6.7, 3.9, 1.4 and 6.8. A total of 23.3% children were dissatisfied with dental appearance/function. Children dissatisfied with their dental appearance were less likely to be Temeke residents (OR = 0.5) and having parents of higher education (OR = 0.6) and more likely to reporting problem with teeth position (OR = 4.3) and having oral impacts (OR = 2.7). The socio-dental treatment need of 12% was five times lower than the normative need assessment of 63.8%.
Conclusion
Compared to the high prevalence of malocclusion, psycho social impacts and dissatisfaction with appearance/function was not frequent among Tanzanian schoolchildren. Subjects with malocclusion reported problems most frequently and malocclusion together with other psycho-social impact scores determined children's satisfaction with teeth appearance- and function.
doi:10.1186/1472-6831-8-14
PMCID: PMC2413214  PMID: 18460198

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