Need of non-operative caries treatment in 16-year-olds from Northern Norway
AuthorJacobsen, Ioanna Dallari; Crossner, Claes-Göran; Eriksen, Harald; Espelid, Ivar; Ullbro, Arne Christer
Aim: To assess the prevalence of proximal enamel lesions, the need for non-operative caries treatment and the quality of dental restorations in 869 students aged 16 years from Northern Norway.
Methods: All first year upper secondary school students in Tromsø and Balsfjord municipalities were invited to participate in an oral- and general health project (Fit Futures). The attendance rate was 90%, and all subjects born in 1994 (449 males and 420 females) were included in the present study. Dental caries was registered according to a 5-graded scale (1–2 = enamel lesions; 3–5 = dentinal lesions). Scores from 1 to 4 were used to register the quality of restorations (1 = good; 2 = acceptable; 3 = poor; 4 = unacceptable).
Results: Only 6% of the 16-year-olds were completely caries-free. There were 84% of the participants with proximal enamel lesions. A majority of them had either previously restored teeth (35%) or both restored teeth and untreated dentinal caries lesions (34%). When using the D-value of the DMFS-index as a diagnostic criterion, 39% of the participants were in need of restorative treatment. When proximal enamel lesions were included in the diagnosis, the number of participants in need of restorative and/or non-operative caries treatment was 85%. Over 1/3 of the participants presented with at least one restoration below an acceptable quality level.
Conclusions: Dental caries is still a major health problem affecting the total teenage population. A non-operative treatment strategy should be considered relevant in order to reduce the need for restorative treatment.