European Archives of Paediatric Dentistry

, Volume 18, Issue 3, pp 197–202 | Cite as

Maternal identification of dental caries lesions in their children aged 1–3 years

  • I. B. FernandesEmail author
  • A. C. Sá-Pinto
  • L. Silva Marques
  • J. Ramos-Jorge
  • M. L. Ramos-Jorge
Original Scientific Article



To analyse the maternal identification of different stages of dental caries in children aged 1–3 years.


A cross-sectional study was conducted with 274 children and their mothers. The mothers answered a questionnaire on the occurrence of dental caries in their children and completed questions addressing their demographic/socio-economic status. The oral examination of the children was performed using the International Caries Detection and Assessment System. Descriptive, Chi square test and Poisson regression statistical analyses were performed.


The prevalence of initial and established/severe dental caries lesions by age were: 1 year (23.2 and 24.2%), 2 years (17.9 and 55.7%) and 3 years (23.3 and 60.3%) respectively. Significant associations between clinical examinations and the mothers' reports were observed among children aged 1 year old who had initial stage caries lesions (p = 0.006) and in children aged 1, 2 and 3 years old who had established/severe stage caries lesions (p < 0.001). After adjustment for confounding variables it was found that mothers were more able to identify dental caries both at initial (PR 4.01, 95% CI 1.35–11.94) and established/severe stages (PR 9.14, 95% CI 2.49–33.56) in children aged 1 year old. In children aged 2 and 3 years, this identification was more evident in the established/severe stage (2 years, PR 2.98, 95% CI 1.42–6.26; 3 years, PR 2.75, 95% CI 1.09–6.93).


Mothers of children aged 1 year old identified dental caries at initial and established/severe stages. Mothers of children aged 2 and 3 years identified dental caries only at established/severe stages.


Dental caries Infant Epidemiology Mothers 



The study received funding from the Brazilian Coordination of Higher Education, Ministry of Education (CAPES), the Research Foundation of the State of Minas Gerais (FAPEMIG) and the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPQ), Brazil.

Compliance with ethical standards

There are no conflicts of interest associated with this publication.

All procedures involving human participants were performed in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee as well as the 1964 Declaration of Helsinki and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. Informed consent was obtained from all participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© European Academy of Paediatric Dentistry 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • I. B. Fernandes
    • 1
    Email author
  • A. C. Sá-Pinto
    • 1
  • L. Silva Marques
    • 1
  • J. Ramos-Jorge
    • 2
  • M. L. Ramos-Jorge
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Paediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics, School of DentistryUniversidade Federal dos Vales do Jequitinhonha e MucuriDiamantinaBrazil
  2. 2.Universidade Federal de Minas GeraisBelo HorizonteBrazil

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