Oral Health Status of Refugee Children in Montreal
This study aimed to assess the oral health status of refugee children in comparison with that of Canadian children. In addition, we investigated the extent to which demographic factors are associated with caries experience in this population. Children with a confirmed refugee status and Canadian children (control group) matched for age and sex composed the study population. A comprehensive review of dental charts was completed to assess children’s demographic data, caries experience, oral hygiene and gingival health status. The majority of refugee children had never seen a dentist before their arrival to Canada. Refugee children had significant higher dmft/DMFT scores than Canadian children (7.29 ± 5.1 and 4.47 ± 5, respectively; p < 0.0001). Furthermore, individual factors, such as refugee status (OR = 5.08; 95% CI = 2.31–11.1) and child age (OR = 2.17; 95% CI = 1.04–4.51) were significantly associated with caries experience. Access to appropriate dental care to refugee children should be a key priority for health care providers and policy makers.
KeywordsRefugee Oral health Children Caries Canada
The authors wish to thank Solange Veloso and Sara-Andrea Bazinet for their invaluable contributions to the Student Dental Clinic for Pediatric Dentistry. We also would like to thank all the staff of the Division of Dentistry, Montreal Children’s Hospital for their contributions to this project.
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