Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences




To compare the oral health status of a group of obese and healthy Turkish children. Materials and methods: The study involved 43 healthy (19 boys and 24 girls, mean age: 9.88) and 53 obese (18 boys and 35 girls, mean age: 10.4) children who were admitted to a pediatric dentistry clinic in 2008 and 2009. The parents were asked to complete a questionnaire concerning medical history and dietary/oral hygiene habits. The number of decayed, missing, and filled permanent teeth (DMFT); number of decayed, missing, and filled primary teeth (dmft); and gingival bleeding index (GBI) scores of patients were recorded. Statistical differences were evaluated using Student's t-test and the Mann-Whitney U test and the nominal variables were tested with Pearson's chi-square test and Fisher's exact test (P =< 0.05). Results: The educational status of parents did not differ significantly between obese and healthy children (P = 0.064). On a daily basis, obese children consumed significantly more snacks (P = 0.003). The carbohydrate intake of healthy children was restricted to mealtimes (P < 0.001) while obese children consumed significantly more carbohydrates as snacks (P < 0.001). In both groups, the participants displayed similar oral hygiene habits and DMFT and dmft scores although GBI scores were significantly higher in obese children. Conclusion: No relationship was found between obesity and the oral health status of the child population evaluated. Similar oral hygiene habits and socioeconomic status might have contributed to this result.


Childhood obesity, dental caries, gingival health

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