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Soft drinks and dental caries experience among 12-14 year old children attending Khalsa Primary School, Nairobi

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SUMMARY

INTRODUCTION Dental caries is a disease process where bacterial activity damages the hard tooth surfaces, causing their demineralization and eventual break down, forming cavities. A soft drink implies a carbonated drink, containing no alcohol. Soft drinks are a form of dietary risk factor for dental caries as they act as a suitable substrate for caries causing bacteria and the carbonated component erodes the tooth surface.

OBJECTIVES To determine the association between soft drinks and dental caries among 12-14 year old, primary school going children of Khalsa Primary School.

STUDY DESIGN This will be a descriptive Cross-sectional study using primary school based study groups.

STUDY AREA The study will be carried out in Khalsa Primary School, in Langata constituency, Nairobi.

METHODS

One hundred and ten pupils aged 12-24 years at Khalsa primary school will be sampled randomly. Administered questionnaires will then be distributed to collect data. Some of the variables to be investigated include age, gender and pattern of soft drink intake. The participants will then be examined for caries using a dental probe and dental mirror and scored using the DMFT Index. Data will be analyzed using SPSS 13. Descriptive and inferential statistical tests will be used.

IV

PERCEIVED BENEFITS The recommendations of this research will set a platform to ensure that primary school going children are aware about the caries-causing risk of soft drinks and thus consume them judiciously

if at all and practice good oral hygiene measures. The knowledge obtained is expected to have a "spill over effect" to the family and the rest of the community, thus improving overall dental health.

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