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Isr J Med Sci. 1991 May;27(5):297-9.

Increased caries prevalence in adolescents who immigrated from Ethiopia to Israel.

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  • 1Section of Pediatric Dentistry, Maurice and Gabriela Goldschleger School of Dental Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Israel.


The prevalence of caries in adolescents who immigrated from Ethiopia increased rapidly, the longer their residence in Israel. A total of 159 newly immigrated adolescents, aged 11-19, who lived in small absorption institutions, as well as 52 Ethiopian adolescents and 173 Israeli-born adolescents living together in a larger institution, were examined. Caries was recorded using the DMFT index, which indicates caries experience. The mean caries prevalence (DMFT) of the newly immigrated Ethiopians was 0.49 and of those residing in Israel 12-24 months was 1.76. The caries rate was highest in the Israeli group (DMFT-10.0). The percentages of caries-free individuals were 10.0% for the Israelis, 58.8% for the Ethiopians who immigrated earlier and 81.8% for the newly immigrated. The abrupt change in dietary habits seems to have created a new high risk caries group. Caries preventive measures, the use of fluoride products, and patient education and motivation are urgently required.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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