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Cadernos de Saúde Pública

On-line version ISSN 1678-4464Print version ISSN 0102-311X


PERES, Karen Glazer et al. Impact of dental caries and dental fluorosis on 12-year-old schoolchildren's self-perception of appearance and chewing. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2003, vol.19, n.1, pp.323-330. ISSN 1678-4464.

It has been suggested that psychosocial dimensions be used to assess the impact of oral health on people's quality of life. The purpose of this study was to measure the impact of dental caries and dental fluorosis on children's self-perception of appearance and mastication. A dental caries and dental fluorosis cross-sectional study was conducted with twelve-year-old schoolchildren (n = 695) in Chapecó, Santa Catarina, Southern Brazil. A questionnaire to assess dental care and dental habits was applied. Risk factors were identified using unconditional multiple logistic regression analysis. None of the variables investigated was associated with dissatisfaction in relation to self-perceived appearance. Independent risk factors for dissatisfaction with self-perceived mastication included enrollment in a public school, caries in an anterior tooth and at least two posterior teeth, and female gender. By way of conclusion, dental fluorosis had no impact on children's self-perception of appearance. Increased severity of dental caries was associated with greater self-perception of impact on chewing. This impact was greater in public schoolchildren, suggesting that there are different values and perceptions between socially different groups.

Keywords : Dental Caries; Dental Fluorosis; Self Concept; Quality of Life.

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