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RENATA KOZAK

DENTAL AND PERIODONTAL STATUS AND TREATMENT NEEDS
OF INSTITUTIONALIZED MENTALLY RETARDED CHILDREN
FROM THE PROVINCE OF WEST POMERANIA

Summary
The aim of this study was to assess the effect of mental retardation and lack of parental care on oral health and dental treatment needs in schoolchildren from the province of West Pomerania. Children with moderate mental retardation, healthy children living at an orphanage, and healthy children living with their parents were compared. Dental health, periodontal status, treatment needs, and oral hygiene indicators were studied in 365 children aged 11 to 13 years and 14 to 16 years. The incidence of caries in mentally retarded children was 100%. Mean DMF was 7.31 and 10.14 in the younger and older age group of these children, respectively. In comparison with healthy children, mentally retarded children demonstrated worse dental and periodontal status and poorer oral hygiene. Moreover, caries prophylaxis was not satisfactory in this group. The results show that mentally retarded children need professional and regular dental care within the framework of a dedicated prophylactic and therapeutic program.

K e y w o r d s : handicapped children – epidemiological studies – caries index – oral hygiene – periodontal status. 

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