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Oral health in children investigated by Social services on suspicion of child abuse and neglect
Karolinska Institutet, Huddinge, Sweden.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Medicinska och farmaceutiska vetenskapsområdet, centrumbildningar mm, Centrum för klinisk forskning i Sörmland (CKFD).
Karolinska Institutet, Huddinge, Sweden.
2018 (English)In: International Journal of Child Abuse & Neglect, ISSN 0145-2134, E-ISSN 1873-7757, Vol. 76, p. 515-523, article id S0145-2134(17)30443-XArticle in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Child abuse and neglect (CAN) are likely to have negative consequences on health; however, for oral health, studies on associated outcomes are sparse. The purpose of this study was to assess oral health and oral health behaviors in relation to suspected CAN among children being investigated by the Swedish Social Services. The material comprised data from the Social Services and dental records; the sample, 86 children and 172 matched controls. The children in the study group had a higher prevalence of dental caries than the control group; in addition, levels of non-attendance and dental avoidance were high, as was parental failure to promote good oral health. We found four factors that, taken together, indicated a high probability of being investigated because of suspected CAN: prevalence of dental caries in primary teeth, fillings in permanent teeth, dental health service avoidance, and referral to specialist pediatric dentistry clinics. If all four factors were present, the cumulative probability of being investigated was 0.918. In conclusion, there is a high prevalence of dental caries, irregular attendance, and a need for referral a pediatric dental clinic among Swedish children under investigation due to suspected CAN. Social context is an important factor in assessing the risk of developing dental caries, the inclination to follow treatment plans, and the prerequisites for cooperation during treatment. Routinely requesting dental records during an investigation would provide important information for social workers on parental skills and abilities to fulfill the basic needs of children.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. Vol. 76, p. 515-523, article id S0145-2134(17)30443-X
Keywords [en]
Child abuse, Child neglect, Dental caries, Dental health service, Pediatric dentistry, Social services
National Category
Dentistry Social Work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-342502DOI: 10.1016/j.chiabu.2017.11.017ISI: 000426538400049PubMedID: 29294446OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-342502DiVA, id: diva2:1184497
Available from: 2018-02-21 Created: 2018-02-21 Last updated: 2018-05-18Bibliographically approved

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Annerbäck, Eva-Maria

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