Dental Caries in Nepalese Children

Investigator: Helen Yuan, MS
Sponsor: Global Health Sciences Education

Location(s): Nepal


An exploration of early childhood caries prevalence, malnutrition and the associated risk factors in rural and urban Nepal.

Under the menorship of Dr. Karen Sokal Gutierrez

Untreated tooth decay, also known as caries, is the most prevalent disease condition in the world, and it is the fourth most expensive disease to treat. Severe early childhood caries (s-ECC) is any sign of smooth-surface caries in children younger than three years of age or a DMFT score greater than four, five, or six in children aged three, four, or five respectively, on primary maxillary anterior teeth and these diagnoses occurs disproportionately in young children from low-income families who may either have an economic disadvantage, or a geographic inability to access dental care. Little published scientific data exists on oral health in Nepalese children; The first and only national oral health survey was conducted in 2014, and concluded that 58% of five to six year olds suffer from dental caries, making it the most prevalent disease affecting children in Nepal.