Perinatal Factors Associated with Early Childhood Caries

Juan F Yepes2, Janneth Varela1, Juan Cardenas1, Luis Alvarez1
1 Dentistry, CES University, Medellin, Antioquia, Colombia
2 Pediatric Dentistry, Indiana University and Riley Hospital for Children, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

Purpose: To determine perinatal factors that may be associated with early childhood caries (ECC) in children aged 2–5 years attending the dental clinic at Health Science University (CES in Spanish).

Methods: A total of 240 children were evaluated, 120 of whom had ECC and 120 who did not and a survey was conducted with the children’s mothers. The children underwent a clinical examination at the dental clinic using the modified Klein and Palmer decayed, missing, filled, and surface (DMFS) index. A review of the mother’s clinical history was done.

Results: Variables such as type of delivery, mother’s education level, socioeconomic level, and frequency of brushing were found as risk factors for ECC. Children born by C-section were 6.2 more likely to have ECC compared with children born by vaginal delivery (95% CI: 3.1 – 12.2). Socioeconomic level and lower number of weeks of gestation were also associated with ECC.

Conclusions: Type of delivery, birth weight and gestational weeks showed statistically significant differences between children with and without ECC. Differences in oral flora from children born by C-section and vaginal delivery have been proposed as the reason of the difference of ECC between children born by C-section and vaginal delivery.

Juan F Yepes