Dental enamel defects, caries experience and oral health-related quality of life: a cohort study

Aust Dent J. 2017 Jun;62(2):165-172. doi: 10.1111/adj.12449. Epub 2017 Jan 26.


Background: The impact of enamel defects of the first permanent molars on caries experience and child oral health-related quality of life was evaluated in a cohort study.

Methods: Children who participated in a study of enamel defects of the first permanent molars 8 years earlier were invited for a follow-up assessment. Consenting children completed the Child Perception Questionnaire and the faces Modified Child Dental Anxiety Scale, and were examined by two calibrated examiners. ANOVA, Kruskal-Wallis, negative binomial and logistic regression were used for data analyses.

Results: One hundred and eleven children returned a completed questionnaire and 91 were clinically examined. Negative binomial regression found that oral health impacts were associated with gender (boys, risk ratio (RR) = 0.73, P = 0.03) and decayed, missing or filled permanent teeth (DMFT) (RR = 1.1, P = 0.04). The mean DMFT of children were sound (0.9, standard deviation (SD) = 1.4), diffuse defects (0.8, SD = 1.7), demarcated defects (1.5, SD = 1.4) and pit defects (1.3, SD = 2.3) (Kruskal-Wallis, P = 0.05). Logistic regression of first permanent molar caries found higher odds of caries experience with baseline primary tooth caries experience (odds ratio (OR) = 1.5, P = 0.01), the number of teeth affected by enamel defects (OR = 1.9, P = 0.05) and lower odds with the presence of diffuse enamel defects (OR = 0.1, P = 0.04).

Conclusions: The presence of diffuse enamel defects was associated with lower odds of caries experience.

Keywords: Caries experience; child dental anxiety; child oral health-related quality of life; cohort study; dental enamel defects.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cohort Studies
  • Dental Caries / epidemiology
  • Dental Caries / psychology*
  • Dental Enamel
  • Dental Enamel Hypoplasia / epidemiology
  • Dental Enamel Hypoplasia / psychology*
  • Dental Restoration, Permanent*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Molar
  • Odds Ratio
  • Oral Health*
  • Quality of Life*
  • Regression Analysis
  • Risk Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires