Association of preventive measures with caries experience expressed by outcome variables.
ABSTRACT The aim of the study was to investigate the effect of various preventive measures on the dental health of twelve-year-olds and to determine the extent to which these variables are linked to the prevention of incipient (D1, 2) and dentinal (D3) lesions. 1,237 twelve-year-old children were examined in Marburg (Germany) in the year 2002. Various caries indices (D3MFT, D1, 2S, D3FS, D1-3FS) and the number of teeth with fissure sealants were recorded. Information about preventive measures carried out in the past was collected by structured questionnaires. Mann-Whitney U-Tests and Kruskal-Wallis-Tests were used to test the significance of the averages, the significance level was set at alpha = 0.05. Logistic regression analyses were conducted to discover associations between dental caries and potentially predictive variables. The mean D3MFT score amounted to 0.78, the mean D3FS was 1.05 and the mean D1, 2S was 1.74. An average of 3.5 teeth with sealants was recorded per child. All caries indices showed a positive association between fissure sealants and caries prevention. Fluoridated table salt yielded similar findings. Children who had received fluoride tablets at least up to their second year of life had significantly lower D3MFT scores than those children who had never had fluoride tablets. To investigate correlations between specific parameters and dental caries in a population, it is useful to record incipient lesions (D1, 2) and dentine caries (D3) as well.