Link to the University of Pittsburgh Homepage
Link to the University Library System Homepage Link to the Contact Us Form

Assessing a relationship between birth weight and dental caries in children: center for oral health research in Appalachia

Bonner, Chantel (2018) Assessing a relationship between birth weight and dental caries in children: center for oral health research in Appalachia. Master Essay, University of Pittsburgh.

[img] Microsoft Word
Submitted Version

Download (806kB)


Dental caries is one of the most common oral diseases in children affecting 36.7% of children 2 – 8 years old (yo), 21.3% of 6 – 11yo, and 58.2% of 12 – 18yo from 2011 – 2012[1]. Furthermore, poor oral health outcomes among childhood may have lasting effects into adulthood, and thus, reduction of periodontal disease in children is an important issue in public health. Poor oral health outcomes, such as development of dental caries, are influenced by genetic, environmental, and behavioral factors. Low birth weight is another factor that has been correlated with poor health outcomes during adulthood. The possible relationship between low birth weight and dental caries in children is unknown. In this study, I investigated whether birth weight was correlated with oral health in children using data on 1227 children (aged 0 to 14 years) who participated in the Center for Oral Health Research in Appalachia (COHRA) study. Oral health was assessed for both primary and permanent teeth and categorized as “healthy” versus “unhealthy”. Analyses revealed that birth weight significantly differed by sex, mean weight of newborn boys was greater than that of newborn girls, 3.35±0.66 kg and 3.22±0.61 kg, respectively (p=0.0004). As expected, mothers who smoked had children with lower mean birth weight than those whose mothers did not smoke, 3.12±0.59 kg and 3.34±0.64 kg, respectively (p<0.0001). Maternal smoking status was also associated with overall health of primary teeth. Among children aged 2-5 years, mothers who smoked had proportionally more children categorized as having “unhealthy teeth” versus mothers who did not smoke, 47.9% versus 31.4%, respectively (p= 0.002). A similar relationship was seen in children aged 6-8 years old: 75.4% of children of mothers who smoked had “unhealthy teeth” versus 58.7% of children of non-smoking mothers (p= 0.002). Maternal smoking status was not associated with health of permanent teeth in children. Finally, birth weight was not associated with dental caries in primary or permanent dentition in children.


Social Networking:
Share |


Item Type: Other Thesis, Dissertation, or Long Paper (Master Essay)
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Bonner, Chantelcmb263@pitt.educmb263
ContributionContributors NameEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairKammerer, Candacecmk3@pitt.educmk3UNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberNeiswanger, Katherineknacct@pitt.eduknacctUNSPECIFIED
Date: 27 April 2018
Date Type: Submission
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 50
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Human Genetics
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master Essay
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: oral health, birth weight, dental caries
Date Deposited: 09 Nov 2018 17:22
Last Modified: 09 Nov 2018 17:22


Monthly Views for the past 3 years

Plum Analytics

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item