Association between parenting stress and early childhood caries in 4-5 years preschool children of Moradabad, India
Aims & Objectives: To determine the association between parenting stress and early childhood caries in preschool children of Moradabad City. Methods: A cross sectional study was conducted among 755 preschool children (63.8% males and 36.2% females) aged 4-5 years along with their parents. 20 preschools were randomly selected out of 75 registered preschools of Moradabad City. The parenting stress level was assessed based on the responses of parents to a standardized questionnaire on Parenting Stress Index - Short Form (PSI/SF). Children were clinically examined by the investigator for dental caries using Dentition Status and Treatment needs (Kappa = 0.8). Chi square test and Analysis of Variance were used for statistical analysis. Results: The level of parenting stress reported was low (37.1%), medium (27.7%), high (35.2%) and the incidence of caries observed among them was 60%, 66.9%, and 59.1% respectively. Medium and high stress level was positively associated with the presence of caries (p=0.164; χ2 = 3.612). In the parenting stress questionnaire mean score and item-total correlation coefficients ranged from 0.30 to 0.80. Conclusion: It is critical to examine the caries process while taking into account the parent child dyad in a developmentally oriented design as young children are dependent on their caregivers for desirable oral health preventive practices.
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