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Pediatr Dent. 2002 Jan-Feb;24(1):64-8.

Frequency of reported dental visits and professional fluoride applications in a cohort of children followed from birth to age 3 years.

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Department of Pediatric Dentistry, The University of Iowa, Iowa City, USA.



The purpose of this study is to report the prevalence of having a dental visit and/or a topical fluoride treatment at the dental visit from birth to age 36 months from an observational, longitudinal study of a cohort of children followed since birth.


Multiple questionnaires were sent to the families of children enrolled in a study of fluoride ingestion to ask parents if their child had had a dental (or dental hygiene) appointment and/or a fluoride treatment during the time interval since the previous mailed survey. Data were analyzed to determine the percentages of children who had at least one dental visit or at least one fluoride treatment by one, two or three years of age.


Three hundred and forty parents completed all eleven questionnaires during the 36-month study period. Of these, 2% reported having taken their child for a dental visit by one year of age, 11% by two years of age and 31% by three years of age. Of those with a visit by three years of age, 19% received at least one fluoride treatment.


Despite recommendations for early dental visits, only 31% of the children in this cohort had been seen by a dentist by the time they reached their third birthday and 19% of these had received a professional fluoride treatment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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