Objective: Describing the prevalence and severity of caries in schoolchildren attending the John F. Kennedy school in Cartagena and its relationship to family factors.
Methods: This was a cross-sectional descriptive study of 243 students. Dental caries prevalence was evaluated by DMFT and ceo-d index; caries severity was measured by using ICDAS II 2005 criteria and family variables were ascertained by filling out a questionnaire that included the Family APGAR (adaptation, partnership, growth, affection and resolve) for measuring family functioning. Descriptive statistics were used when analysing relationships and the Chi-square test was used for variables.
Results: Caries prevalence was 51 % (45-95 59 %CI). It was shown that 38 % (31-44 95 %CI) of parents had reached secondary school (but not completed it), 44 % (39-54 95 %CI) were living with a partner, 47 % (40-53 95 %CI) had low socioeconomic status, 53 % (47-57 95 %CI) were living in nuclear families, 47 % (41-53 95 %CI) were receiving less than minimum wage income, 66 % (58-70 95 %CI) were affiliated to the government health system and 59 % (52-66 95 %CI) were living in dysfunctional families. Bivariate analysis only revealed statistical significance regarding the fathers incomplete secondary schooling and the presence of dental caries (p=0.04).
Conclusions: Even though most variables showed no statistical significance regarding explaining the presence of dental caries, they did provide epidemiologically important indicators which would facilitate decisions being made from a public health standpoint.