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Caries Res. 2012;46(2):170-6. doi: 10.1159/000337280. Epub 2012 Apr 6.

Association between black stains and dental caries in primary teeth: findings from a Brazilian population-based birth cohort.

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Postgraduate Program in Dentistry, Federal University of Pelotas, Pelotas, Brazil.


Lower dental caries experience has been observed in children and teenagers with the presence of black stains on dental structures. However, none of the previous investigations were population-based studies or adjusted the analysis for potential confounders. This study assessed the prevalence of black stains at the age of 5 in a population-based birth cohort from Pelotas, Brazil and investigated the association between black stains and dental caries. A total of 1,129 children from the 2004 Pelotas birth cohort were examined at age 5, and their mothers were interviewed at their households. Dental examinations included a search for black stains and dental caries on the primary dentition through the dmf-s index. The mothers' questionnaire comprised data on demographic, social, and behavior aspects. Prevalence of black stains was 3.5% (95% CI 2.5-4.7) and the prevalence of dental caries was 48.4% (95% CI 45.4-51.4). Multivariable logistic regression analysis was performed to assess the association between black stains and dental caries. Adjusted analysis revealed that the presence of black stains was associated with lower levels of dental caries (OR = 0.51; 95% CI 0.26-0.99). The results of the present study suggest that black stains are a protective factor for dental caries development.

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