Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect parental attitudes have on the dental caries experience in children.
Methods: Cross-sectional observational data was collected via clinical examinations and questionnaires. The study included 258 mothers of children who came to Yeditepe University, Faculty of Dentistry, Department of Paediatric Dentistry for the treatment of their children. Multi-variable Poisson regression model was run to predict prevalence of dental caries (DMFT + dmft: decayed, missing, filled teeth in permanent and primary teeth, respectively). Mothers’ attitudes in family were measured by the Parental Attitude Research Instrument [PARI] questionnaire scores..
Results: Among the five factors of PARI scores, PARI Factor 3 (Rejection of Traditional House-Wife Role) and PARI Factor 5 (Level of Discipline) exhibited a statistically significant negative correlation with prevalence of caries. PARI Factor 4 (Level of Marital Conflict) had a statistically significant positive correlation with prevalence of caries.
Conclusion: A healthy family environment and an empowering parental style have positive effects on the oral health of children.