Revue Belge de Médecine Dentaire vol:56 issue:4 pages:258-69
The aim of the present study was to assess indicators shown to be associated with the prevalence of caries in the primary dentition of 7-year-old Flemish schoolchildren. Cross-sectional first year data of the Signal-Tandmobiel survey were analysed (n = 4468). Gender, age, oral hygiene habits, use of fluorides, dietary habits, geographical factors and social factors were involved in logistic regression models. There was a significant difference (P < 0.05) in caries experience determined by the geographical spread, with an explicit trend of caries declining from the east to the west. A start of brushing before the age of 2 and a brushing frequency of at least once a day need to be encouraged, while the use of sugar containing drinks and snacks between meals needs to be restricted to a maximum of 2 per day. The mean dmf-t values were the lowest for the most advantaged children and where threefold higher in the least advantaged children. There was a cumulative effect of decreasing social level and oral health habits on the caries prevalence. Social inequalities in oral health among children exist in Flanders.