Geographic and socioeconomic variations in adolescent toothbrushing: a multilevel cross-sectional study of 15 year olds in Scotland

Levin, K.A., Nicholls, N. , Macdonald, S., Dundas, R. and Douglas, G.V.A. (2015) Geographic and socioeconomic variations in adolescent toothbrushing: a multilevel cross-sectional study of 15 year olds in Scotland. Journal of Public Health, 37(1), pp. 107-115. (doi: 10.1093/pubmed/fdu034) (PMID:24917568) (PMCID:PMC4699261)

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Background: This study examined urban–rural and socioeconomic differences in adolescent toothbrushing. Methods: The data were modelled using logistic multilevel modelling and the Markov Chain Monte Carlo method of estimation. Twice-a-day toothbrushing was regressed upon age, family affluence, family structure, school type, area-level deprivation and rurality, for boys and girls separately. Results: Boys’ toothbrushing was associated with area-level deprivation but not rurality. Variance at the school level remained significant in the final model for boys' toothbrushing. The association between toothbrushing and area-level deprivation was particularly strong for girls, after adjustment for individuals’ family affluence and type of school attended. Rurality too was independently significant with lower odds of brushing teeth in accessible rural areas. Conclusion: The findings are at odds with the results of a previous study which showed lower caries prevalence among children living in rural Scotland. A further study concluded that adolescents have a better diet in rural Scotland. In total, these studies highlight the need for an examination into the relative importance of diet and oral health on caries, as increases are observed in population obesity and consumption of sugars.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Macdonald, Mr Scott and Nicholls, Dr Natalie and Dundas, Professor Ruth
Authors: Levin, K.A., Nicholls, N., Macdonald, S., Dundas, R., and Douglas, G.V.A.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
Journal Name:Journal of Public Health
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN (Online):1741-3850

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
656601Measuring Health, Variations in Health and Determinants of HealthAlastair LeylandMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_12017/5IHW - MRC/CSO SPHU