Title: Dental caries in Danish children: 1988-2001
Abstract: Aim To report national data on dental caries in Danish children and adolescents from 1988 to 2001. Study design Descriptive cross-sectional epidemiological study. Methods Data on dental caries for 5, 7, 12 and 15 year old individuals reported from 1988 to 2001 to the database established by the Danish National Board of Health. Results Caries has decreased in all four age groups, but the decrease levelled out by the end of the period. The relative decrease is less in the primary dentition than in the permanent dentition. The shift to the left of the distribution of 15 year olds according to DMFS is marked, while the distribution of 5 year old children according to dmfs is almost unchanged. Mean number of non-cavitated lesions is slightly more than one, but the distribution is very skewed. A 50% decrease in mean DMFS for 15 year old children was found for most of the counties. Conclusion Caries has decreased in Danish children and adolescents from 1988 to 2001. In relative terms, the decrease is less in the primary dentition than in the permanent dentition. The decrease seems to have taken place across the entire country.