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Revista Cubana de Estomatología

Print version ISSN 0034-7507On-line version ISSN 1561-297X


RAMIREZ MARTINEZ, Leidi Yuliana et al. Oral health and social determinants in visually impaired schoolchildren from Medellín. Rev Cubana Estomatol [online]. 2020, vol.57, n.4, e2985.  Epub Sep 30, 2020. ISSN 0034-7507.


Oral health requires a contextual and social analysis in populations considered vulnerable.


Establish the oral health status of a group of visually impaired schoolchildren and its relationship to social, family and individual determinants.


A descriptive study was conducted of 21 visually impaired schoolchildren and 15 significant adults. A survey was applied to collect sociodemographic information and data about habits and use of oral health care services. Clinical examination was based on the following indicators: O'Leary's index, Löe and Silness's gingivitis index, Klein and Palmer's COP-D index, both traditional and modified, and significant caries index (SiC). Descriptive analysis was performed of absolute and relative frequencies.


The data were distributed into three categories: social, family and individual. Social analysis found that 40% (n = 6) of the respondents were in the subsidized sector, whereas 53.3% (n = 8) reported difficulties to access dental care services. With respect to the family environment, it was found that 53% (n = 8) of the study population were from a low socioeconomic stratum and only 60% (n = 9) of the participants in the study had completed secondary education. Individual analysis revealed that 100% of the schoolchildren showed evidence of poor plaque control (73.3 % ± 23.7). The traditional significant caries index was 4.3 (± 2.4), whereas the modified significant caries index was 6.7 (± 1.7). A moderate gingivitis index was found in 100% of the schoolchildren with an average 23.5 (± 24.5).


The main hurdles identified had to do with the social status (occupation, income, education), all of which has an impact on the oral health status. It is necessary to address this type of population with a participative, continuous, integral approach which empowers care givers and transforms their practices via health promotion.

Keywords : visual disorders; oral health; health surveys; dental caries; periodontal disease.

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