Peng, S.M., Wong, H.M., King, N.M., McGrath, C.

Aim
To determine associations between dental caries experience and adiposity status among a community sample of preschool children in Hong Kong.

Design
Among a random sample of five-year-old children, clinical assessment for dental caries was conducted using World Health Organisation (WHO) criteria. Anthropometric measurements for body weight, body height, waist circumference (WC), hip circumference, and triceps skinfold thickness (TRSKF) were performed to assess general adiposity, central adiposity, and peripheral adiposity. Associations between adiposity status and caries were examined in regression analyses.

Results
The response rate was 83.1% (324/390). Regression analyses (adjusted for tooth brushing habits, snacking habits, and socio-demographic factors) identified that weight/height ratio z-score was associated with caries experience: prevalence of dental caries experience (dmft >0), OR 1.41 (95% CI 1.04, 1.91), and ‘very high’ caries experience (dmft ≥SiC10 Index value), OR 1.62, (95% CI 1.05, 2.50). In addition, WC z-score was associated with ‘very high’ caries experience (dmft ≥SiC10 Index value), OR 1.72, 95% CI 1.06, 2.81.

Conclusion
In a Hong Kong community sample of preschool children, dental caries experience was associated with general adiposity (as assessed by weight/height ratio) and central adiposity (as assessed by WC).

International Journal of Paediatric Dentistry 2014; 24 (2): 122-130.