Does promoting oral health in schools reduce dental caries?

Does promoting oral health in schools reduce dental caries?

Researchers will use the more than $400,000 NIH grant to survey school sealing program directors and state oral health directors in the United States to determine how they use school-based sealing programs, then dive into the data on children’s teeth.

However, most of these programs are in elementary schools and what we don’t know is how different it looks in a middle school. The new research hypothesis is that children’s first molars may be in better shape because they are more likely to be cemented in these school programs and than second molars, those that typically arrive between ages 11 and 13, are not.

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The researchers will use data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which details children’s teeth, including those with sealants, cavities and missing teeth, in addition to demographic data.

Once the research team analyzes the CDC data and survey results, they will build a simulation model to see what the likely benefit of increasing school-based sealing programs for middle schoolers would be.

Once the simulation model is built, the team will be able to estimate the impact of increasing the number of school-based sealing programs on children’s teeth. If their results support the belief that more school-based sealing programs will cost-effectively improve children’s oral health, the goal is to seek funding to help implement more programs.

Source: Eurekalert