Childhood oral health and disease – a multifactorial model
Associate Professor Toby Hughes
The University of Adelaide
Tooth decay is the most common chronic disease of Australian children, affecting 50% of 6 year olds. It causes pain, systemic infection, speech/learning problems, and is a predictor for poor general health. Treatment accounts for $5.3 billion in spending in Australia annually.
The role of dietary sugar in tooth decay is well established, however population lifestyle changes are difficult and costly to implement. This project will identify factors in dental plaque for use in early screening to identify high risk children, promoting targeted, less invasive, and more cost-effective interventions.