Yonsei Med J.  1997 Apr;38(2):101-110. 10.3349/ymj.1997.38.2.101.

Relationship between nutritional intake and dental caries experience of junior high students

  • 1Department of Preventive Dentistry & Public Oral Health, College of Dentistry, College of Medicine, Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Department of Preventive Medicine & Public Health, College of Medicine, Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea.
  • 3Department of Food & Nutrition, Dongduck Women's University, Seoul, Korea.


This study was designed to investigate the relationship between nutritional intake and caries experience of junior high school students. The sample consisted of 295 boys and 356 girls in Kangwha county. Dependent variables were total caries experience, occlusal surface caries experience, smooth surface caries experience and DMFS score (Decayed, Missing, Filling Tooth Surface score). Independent variables such as pit and fissure retentiveness of first molars, oral hygiene status, intraoral acidogenicity were also measured by dentists. Other independent variables such as toothbrushing habits, socioeconomic conditions, between-meal eating habits, and daily nutritional intake were determined during an interview. Univariate and multivariate analysis was performed to evaluate how nutritional intake influences caries experience. The results were as follows: 1. The most influential factor on dental caries experience was pit and fissure retentiveness. 2. Dietary fiber and potassium were the significant nutritional factors on total caries experience and occlusal caries experience, and niacin was the significant nutritional factor on smooth surface caries. 3. DMFS score was positively associated with the daily amount of carbohydrate and niacin intake, and negatively associated with total energy intake. The above results suggested that pit and fissure retentiveness was the most influential factor on caries experience. However, in this study, the intake of potassium and niacin was identified to influence the caries experience in addition to confirming the well-known relationship between fiber and carbohydrate intake.


DMFS; dental caries; pit and fissure retentiveness; caries activity
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