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Association between dental pain, use of dental services and school absenteeism: 2015 National School Health Survey, Brazil




Absenteeism, Oral Health, Toothache, Dental Care, Cross-Sectional Studies


Objective: To analyze the association between dental pain, use of dental services and school absenteeism in Brazilian adolescents. Methods: Cross-sectional study with data from the National School Health Survey (PeNSE 2015). The dependent variable of the study was school absenteeism due to health reasons in the last 12 months. Socioeconomic characteristics, dental pain and the use of dental services were the independent variables evaluated. Logistic regression was used to estimate odds ratio (OR) and respective 95% confidence intervals (95%CI). Results: Data of 102,072 schoolchildren were included. The prevalence of absenteeism due to health reasons was 53.7% (95%CI 53.2;54.3). In the adjusted analysis, there was an association between dental pain and school absenteeism (OR=1.35 – 95%CI 1.26;1.45), and an increase in the occurrence of absenteeism according to higher number of dental visits. Conclusion: The results suggest that dental pain and frequency of dental visits may be related to school absenteeism.


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Health Sciences