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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 62-71

Oral health condition and treatment needs of a group of UAE children with down syndrome

Department of Surgical Sciences, College of Dentistry, Ajman University of Science & Technology. (Al Jurf campus), United Arab Emirates

Correspondence Address:
Mohamed A Jaber
Department of Surgical Sciences, College of Dentistry, Ajman University of Science & Technology. (Al Jurf campus)
United Arab Emirates
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1947-489X.210972

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Objectives: Several studies have described the oral health condition and treatment needs of individuals with Down syndrome (DS), but there are no reports about DS patients in UAE. This study was conducted to determine the oral health condition and treatment needs in these patients. Methods: Sixty children with DS attending Sharjah School for Humanitarian Service (SSHS) were selected for the study. In the evaluation, the children were compared with a normal non-DS control group selected from children attending college of dentistry Ajman University dental clinics and matched for age and sex. Clinical assessment included extraoral and intraoral examination, measurement of decayed (D), missing (M) and filled (F) teeth (DMFT) for permanent dentition and (dmft) for primary dentition, while periodontal evaluation included recording of oral hygiene status, plaque index (P1), gingival index (GI), probing depth (PD), and clinical attachment level (CAL). Periodontal and gingival health status was recorded according to the Community Periodontal Index of Treatment Needs (CPITN). DS children were also examined for malocclusion, dental hypoplasia, crowding, and missing teeth. Results: Compared with normal controls, children with DS had mean number of DMFT almost twice as high as that in the parallel healthy controls (13.2 ± 0.84 vs. 7.4 ± 3.94). More of the DS children showed poor oral hygiene. The assessment of the periodontal treatment needs of the DS children revealed that only 10% of the children had healthy gingiva compared with 38.3% of healthy controls. Significantly high proportion of DS patients (p < 0.05) require complex periodontal treatment. DS patients have shown a significantly higher proportion of malocclusion (p < 0.01), compared with non-DS subjects. Conclusion: Individuals with DS in UAE have poor oral health and an increased occurrence of periodontal disease and dental caries compared with otherwise normal, age-matched control groups. Preventive, restorative and periodontal treatment needs are unmet in DS children. These findings reinforce the importance of promoting the integration of the dental specialists to the interdisciplinary team that provides healthcare for this group of children.

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