Journal of Oral Health and Community Dentistry

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VOLUME 15 , ISSUE 3 ( September-December, 2021 ) > List of Articles


Gender and Ethnic Group Differences in Dental Caries in a Sri Lankan Population

Roshan D Peiris, Kapila S Arambawatta, Shyama K Bannehaka, Tharanga L Nandasena, Thushari N Pitakotuwage

Keywords : Aboriginal Vedda, Adolescents, Caries prevalence, Children, Ethnic group differences, Gender differences, Sri Lankan Sinhalese

Citation Information : Peiris RD, Arambawatta KS, Bannehaka SK, Nandasena TL, Pitakotuwage TN. Gender and Ethnic Group Differences in Dental Caries in a Sri Lankan Population. J Oral Health Comm Dent 2021; 15 (3):103-107.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10062-0108

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published Online: 27-01-2022

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2021; The Author(s).


Aim: To determine the caries prevalence rate of children and adolescent in contemporary Sri Lankan Sinhalese and aboriginal Vedda population. Materials and methods: Dental caries rates were examined in two Sri Lankan ethnic groups of urban, westernized, market-integrated Sinhalese and rural, aboriginal Veddas with traditional culture. Two age-groups were studied in each ethnic group: 5–7-year olds and 12–15-year olds. A target sample of 563 subjects was recruited (373 contemporary Sinhalese 190 aboriginal Veddas). Results: In 5–7-year age-group, caries prevalence and dmft were higher in females than males in Sinhalese while those of males were higher than females in Vedda. In 12–15-year age-group, Vedda showed higher caries prevalence and DMFT in males than those of females while Sinhalese showed the opposite where females had higher caries prevalence than males. When compared the caries prevalence and dmft/DMFT between Sinhalese and Vedda, in 5–7-year age-group, above parameters of both males and females were higher in Sinhalese than Vedda. The difference was statistically significant only in female dmft. In 12–15-year age-group, the pattern was opposite where caries prevalence and DMFT were higher in Vedda than Sinhalese in both the genders. Caries prevalence of 5–7-year age-group was significantly higher than that of 12–15-year age-group in both males and females of contemporary Sinhalese and Vedda. Conclusion: Overall caries prevalence of 5–7-year and 12–15-year age-groups is 72.3% and 33.1%, respectively, in contemporary Sri Lankan Sinhalese and 63.9% and 40.3%, respectively, in Vedda. Furthermore, females of 12–15-year age-group do not demonstrate significantly higher caries rates than males in both the population groups. The caries prevalence in children is higher than adolescent in both genders of contemporary Sri Lankan Sinhalese and Vedda. This information is necessary in planning and implementing oral diseases prevention and health promotion programs.

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