Overweight kids have fewer cavities, new study shows

Apr 02, 2008

Contrary to conventional wisdom, overweight children have fewer cavities and healthier teeth compared to their normal weight peers, according to a study published in this month’s issue of Community Dentistry & Oral Epidemiology.

Surprised researchers at the Eastman Dental Center, part of the University of Rochester Medical Center, conducted a secondary analysis of nearly 18,000 children who participated in two separate National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (NHANES III and NHANES 99-02).

The study found no differences in rates of caries (tooth decay) among children ages 2-5 in all weight ranges, while children ages 6-18 who were considered overweight and at risk for becoming overweight showed a decreased risk of caries compared to their normal weight peers.

“We expected to find more oral disease in overweight children of all ages, given the similar causal factors that are generally associated with obesity and caries,” said Eastman Dental Center’s Dorota Kopycka-Kedzierawski, DDS, MPH, the lead author. “Our findings raise more questions than answers. For example, are overweight children eating foods higher in fat rather than cavity-causing sugars? Are their diets similar to normal weight peers but lead more sedentary lifestyles? Research to analyze both diet and lifestyle is needed to better understand the results.”

The study defined overweight children as being at the 95th or higher percentile for their age and sex; children at the 85th or higher percentile and less than 95th percentile for their age and sex were defined as at risk for becoming overweight.

Source: University of Rochester

Explore further: Changing diagnosis codes will challenge emergency medicine

Related Stories

Architects to hatch Ecocapsule as low-energy house

4 hours ago

Where people call home depends on varied factors, from poverty level to personal philosophy to vanity to community pressure. Ecocapsule appears to be the result of special factors, a team of architects applying ...

California farmers agree to drastically cut water use

8 hours ago

California farmers who hold some of the state's strongest water rights avoided the threat of deep mandatory cuts when the state accepted their proposal to voluntarily reduce consumption by 25 percent amid ...

Apple may deliver ways to rev up the iPad, report says

8 hours ago

MacRumors last month said that the latest numbers from market research firm IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker revealed Apple stayed on as the largest vendor in a declining tablet market. The iPad ...

Recommended for you

Link between alcohol outlets and assaults

3 hours ago

A study exploring the established link between off-premise alcohol outlets and the rate of assaults and injuries in Australia has found that large bottleshops and liquor chains contribute most substantially ...

Mobilising against hypertension in South Africa

4 hours ago

Lifestyle-related disease is on the rise in South Africa, including high blood pressure. An ingenious partnership involving Oxford University is putting the nation's extensive mobile phone network to work ...

Making an impact on concussions

4 hours ago

The crash test dummy head is weighted and hauled with a pulley up the track. After a final check of the instruments and a quick countdown, the helmeted head plummets into an inevitable collision, moving at ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.