Tooth wear in Irish teenagers: a laboratory and epidemiological study

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Harding, Máiréad
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University College Cork
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Aim: To investigate the characteristics, development and determinants of toothwear among Irish schoolchildren. Methods: A cross-sectional (examination at 16-years-old) and longitudinal (examinations at 5-,12-,14-years) study were conducted. Two indices were used to measure toothwear, children/parents completed a demographic profile and questionnaire on oral hygiene and dietary practices, health, and lifestyle in both studies. Saliva was collected from consenting 16-year-olds. The explanatory variables for the cross-sectional and longitudinal study were derived from children/parents responses. Differences in salivary profiles were determined for subsets; the protein concentration was determined with Bradford protein assay and protein carbonyl concentration (a protein oxidation marker) was determined spectrophotometrically. Gel-electrophoresis and mass spectrometry determined proteins and ion chromatography inorganic ions. Statistical significance was accepted at p<0.05. Results: At 16-years-old the prevalence of toothwear with dentine visible was 44%. No difference in salivary flow rates existed. In unstimulated saliva a higher mean, protein carbonyl (p<0.0001) and total calcium concentration (p<0.002) existed for the group with moderate toothwear. In stimulated saliva the moderate toothwear group had a lower mean protein concentration(p<0.0001). The 2-DE protein spots prepared for a sub-group differed between those with toothwear and without. Mass spectrometry, identified one of the different proteins as IgA. For 16-year-olds, the self-reported factors indicated that brushing after breakfast was associated with lower toothwear scores(p<0.03). Nail-biting, being asthmatic or reporting a dry mouth were associated with higher toothwear scores(all p<0.05). Eating an apple daily or less was associated with less toothwear(p<0.002). In the longitudinal study toothwear into dentine at age five or 12-years was associated with more toothwear at age 14(all p<0.05). Discussion: The results illustrate the multifactorial aetiology of toothwear. The biochemical and physical correlates of saliva with toothwear requires further research. Conclusion: The impact of previous toothwear, salivary, dietary and personal factors on toothwear in the early permanent dentition is demonstrated.
Epidemiological , Tooth wear , Diet , Index , Saliva
Harding, M. A. 2015. Tooth wear in Irish teenagers: a laboratory and epidemiological study. PhD Thesis, University College Cork.
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