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Clin Oral Investig. 2011 Apr;15(2):177-84. doi: 10.1007/s00784-009-0368-z. Epub 2010 Jan 7.

Interrelation between obesity, oral health and life-style factors among Turkish school children.

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Department of Community Dentistry, Institute of Odontology, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.


Obesity, dental caries and periodontal diseases are among major public health concerns which may affect children's growth and development. This study seeks any clustering between obesity, oral health and life-style factors among school children in Istanbul, Turkey. A cross-sectional study of children, 10- to 12-year-olds, from a public and a private school was undertaken with questionnaires for children and their mothers and child oral health data, in Istanbul (n = 611). DMFS (number of decayed, missing and filled surfaces of permanent teeth), CPI (Community Periodontal Index), body mass index (BMI) and life-style factors (tooth-brushing frequency, milk consumption at breakfast and bedtimes on school nights) of children were examined. Data analysis included factor analysis, Student's t test and Chi-square tests by cross-tabulation. Public school children were more dentally diseased but less obese than were those in private school (P < 0.001). They more frequently had calculus (62%) and reported non-recommended tooth-brushing (68%) than did those in private school (37%, 56%; P < 0.05). Principal component analysis revealed that DMFS, CPI and BMI shared the same cluster among all children. A need exists for addressing obesity, oral health and nutrition jointly in health promotion strategies to improve children's well-being and empower good life-style factors.

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