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International Journal of Dentistry
Volume 2013, Article ID 757938, 9 pages
Clinical Study

Comparing Health Promotion Programs in Public Dental Service of Vantaa, Finland: A Clinical Trial in 6–36-Month-Old Children

1Health and Social Welfare Affairs, Pakkalankuja 5, 01510 Vantaa, Finland
2Department of Community Dentistry, Institute of Dentistry, University of Turku, Lemminkaisenkatu 2, 20014 Turku, Finland

Received 12 June 2013; Revised 22 September 2013; Accepted 3 October 2013

Academic Editor: Robert Schroth

Copyright © 2013 Irma Arpalahti et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. The study assessed whether the new family-based programs in health promotion or the training of dental professionals had an impact on the colonization of mutans streptococci (MS) in young children. Material and Methods. The participants were children born in 2008 and inhabitants of Vantaa aged 24–36 months. The families with first-born children were invited to a questionnaire study. Vantaa was categorized into three matching areas, which were randomly assigned to different programs. New counseling methods were trained. The routine program used earlier served as the control group. The children born in 2006 served as a historic control. The outcome measure was the presence of MS. Statistical method was logistic regression. Results. Colonization of MS was found only in few children born in 2006 or 2008; 15% and 11%, respectively. Within the 2008 birth cohort, the addition of parental counseling did not improve the routine program. Instead, the father’s advanced level of education ( ) and the child’s reported the use of xylitol at least three times a day ( ) associated with negative MS scores. Conclusions. The routine program and training of the professionals seem to reduce the proportion of children with MS more than adding parental self-care to oral health programs.