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The effect of lifetime fluoridation exposure on dental caries experience of younger rural adults


Crocombe, LA and Brennan, DS and Slade, GD and Stewart, JF and Spencer, AJ, The effect of lifetime fluoridation exposure on dental caries experience of younger rural adults, Australian Dental Journal, 60, (1) pp. 30-37. ISSN 0045-0421 (2015) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2015 Australian Dental Association

DOI: doi:10.1111/adj.12243


Background: The aim of this study was to confirm whether the level of lifetime fluoridation exposure is associated with lower dental caries experience in younger adults (15-46 years).

Methods: Data of the cohort born between 1960 and 1990 residing outside Australia's capital cities from the 2004-2006 Australian National Survey of Adult Oral Health were analysed. Residential history questionnaires were used to determine the percentage of each person's lifetime exposure to fluoridated water (<50%/50+%). Examiners recorded decayed, missing, and filled permanent teeth (DMFT). Socio-demographic variables, periodontal risk factors, and access to dental care were included in multivariable least-squares regression models.

Results: In bivariate analysis, the higher level of fluoridation category had significantly lower DMFT (mean 6.01 [SE = 0.62]) than the lower level of fluoridation group (9.14 [SE = 0.73] p < 0.01) and lower numbers of filled teeth (4.08 [SE = 0.43], 7.06 [SE = 0.62], p < 0.01). In multivariate analysis, the higher number of full-time equivalent dentists per 100 000 people was associated with a lower mean number of missing teeth (regression coefficient estimate = 1.75, p = 0.03), and the higher level of water fluoridation with a lower mean DMFT (2.45, p < 0.01) and mean number of filled teeth (2.52, p < 0.01)..

Conclusions: The higher level of lifetime fluoridation exposure was associated with substantially lower caries experience in younger rural adults, largely due to a lower number of filled teeth.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:allied health, dental health, health outcomes research, oral epidemiology, rural health
Research Division:Biomedical and Clinical Sciences
Research Group:Dentistry
Research Field:Dentistry not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Dental health
UTAS Author:Crocombe, LA (Associate Professor Leonard Crocombe)
ID Code:96975
Year Published:2015 (online first 2014)
Web of Science® Times Cited:16
Deposited By:UTAS Centre for Rural Health
Deposited On:2014-11-27
Last Modified:2017-11-06

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