A study of dental caries in rural and an urban primary school in Zambia
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320 children 160 from a rural and 160 from an urban primary school were examined for dental caries.The urban children were found to have twice as much caries as their rural counterparts. Their D.M.F./df indices were also much higher. No significant sex difference was noted. The tribal distribution shows that the Tonga are the most susceptible tribe while the Lenje have the least caries. The relationship between caries and brushing habits, as well as consumption of confectionary was established. The commonest teeth affected and their relationship to age was also noted. It was concluded that urbanization has definitely contributed to the higher caries prevalence in the urban school children. Although the situation is not as bad as in the West, if it remains unchecked, 90% of the population may have caries in another 15 years.
- Ministry of Health