Identification of caries risk factors in toddlers

M. Fontana, R. Jackson, G. Eckert, N. Swigonski, J. Chin, A. Ferreira Zandona, M. Ando, G. K. Stookey, S. Downs, D. T. Zero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

43 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to identify risk factors to predict caries progression in toddlers in primary-healthcare settings for the cost-effective targeting of preventive and referral strategies. We examined 329 children (26 ± 6 mos old) twice, one year apart, in Indiana, USA. A 107-item structured interview was used to collect information from the primary caregiver and child on factors/beliefs/perceptions/behaviors that could affect caries development, transmission of bacteria, medical-dental health, and access to care. Bacterial levels, gingivitis, dental plaque, and caries experience were assessed. Multiple-variable logistic regression models of caries progression toward cavitation included family caries experience, transmission-related behaviors, dietary factors, health beliefs, and lower income, but differed in selected predictors/ predictive power by race/ethnicity. Addition of clinical variables did not significantly improve the prediction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)209-214
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of dental research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2011


  • dental caries
  • longitudinal study
  • risk assessment.
  • toddler

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dentistry(all)

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