Self-reported health behavior and dental knowledge of a migrant worker population

Community Dent Oral Epidemiol. 1985 Jun;13(3):140-2. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0528.1985.tb00429.x.


In conjunction with operation of a summer school-based dental program in Michigan, 101 children from migrant families, primarily Mexican-American, completed questionnaires relating demographic background, past dental experience, and knowledge of caries preventive methods. A smaller number of available mothers were asked these questions plus others relating to family dental problems, diet and knowledge of periodontal disease. Adults and children reported similar demographic backgrounds. Most children (68.7%) listed brushing as the best way to prevent cavities as did 60% of the mothers. Less than 2% of the children considered use of fluoride in any form as the best way to prevent cavities and only two of 20 mothers mentioned fluoride in this context. Members of this selected population were weak in their knowledge of the relation between a sweet diet and caries, the relation between oral hygiene and periodontal health, and the role of fluorides in caries prevention.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Attitude to Health
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Culture
  • Dental Care
  • Dental Caries / prevention & control
  • Health Education, Dental*
  • Hispanic or Latino*
  • Humans
  • Mexico / ethnology
  • Michigan
  • Mothers
  • Oral Hygiene*
  • Transients and Migrants*