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Open Access Highly Accessed Systematic review update

Body mass index and dental caries in children and adolescents: a systematic review of literature published 2004 to 2011

Merrilyn Hooley1*, Helen Skouteris1, Cecile Boganin1, Julie Satur2 and Nicky Kilpatrick34

Author Affiliations

1 School of Psychology, Deakin University, 221 Burwood Highway, Burwood, Melbourne, Victoria, 3125, Australia

2 Melbourne Dental School,Faculty of Medicine Dentistry and Health Sciences, The University of Melbourne, 720 Swanston Street, Melbourne, 3010, Australia

3 Department of Paediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, The University of Melbourne, 720 Swanston Street, Melbourne, 3010, Australia

4 Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, Royal Children's Hospital, Flemington Road, Parkville, Victoria, 3052, Australia

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Systematic Reviews 2012, 1:57  doi:10.1186/2046-4053-1-57

Published: 21 November 2012

Abstract

The objective

The authors undertook an updated systematic review of the relationship between body mass index and dental caries in children and adolescents.

Method

The authors searched Medline, ISI, Cochrane, Scopus, Global Health and CINAHL databases and conducted lateral searches from reference lists for papers published from 2004 to 2011, inclusive. All empirical papers that tested associations between body mass index and dental caries in child and adolescent populations (aged 0 to 18 years) were included.

Results

Dental caries is associated with both high and low body mass index.

Conclusion

A non-linear association between body mass index and dental caries may account for inconsistent findings in previous research. We recommend future research investigate the nature of the association between body mass index and dental caries in samples that include a full range of body mass index scores, and explore how factors such as socioeconomic status mediate the association between body mass index and dental caries.

Keywords:
Early childhood caries; Childhood obesity; Review; Dental caries; Obesity; Overweight