Special Issue "Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children"

A special issue of Children (ISSN 2227-9067). This special issue belongs to the section "Global and Public Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (1 February 2021).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Santosh K. Tadakamadla
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Dentistry and Oral Health, Griffith University, Gold Coast 4222, Australia
Interests: oral Epidemiology; health promotion; oral-systemic link; quality of life
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Gianluca M. Tartaglia
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
UOC Maxillo-Facial Surgery and Dentistry, Department of Biomedical, Surgical and Dental Sciences, School of Dentistry, Fondazione IRCCS Ca Granda, Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, University of Milan, 20100 Milan, Italy
Interests: oral health; cranio- and dentofacial growth; TMJ pathology in children and adults; oral rehabilitation
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Recent years have seen an increased interest in dental caries and other oral diseases in children and adolescents, as good oral health at younger ages can prevent worse consequences in adulthood. Exploring and understanding the role of several individual or contextual risk factors of oral diseases is significant for the planning and implementation of preventative or therapeutic interventions aimed at improving oral health outcomes in children.  Such interventions would not only help in reducing the oral disease burden but also alleviate pain, functional impairments, and impaired quality of life. In particular, oral diseases are more important in children with special needs, which could also potentially affect the functioning of families, stress and family relationships throughout life.

For this Special Issue, we invite authors to submit high-quality contributions related to the burden of oral diseases, their risk factors and the impact of these conditions on quality of life, as well as preventive and therapeutic approaches for their prevention and treatment in children. We welcome both original articles and systematic reviews. Moreover, with regard to rare congenital conditions, informative case series and case reports focusing on novel interventions are also very welcome. Papers reporting on the methodological aspects of research in this area will also be considered. 

Dr. Santosh K. Tadakamadla
Dr. Gianluca M. Tartaglia
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Children is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • dental caries
  • oral diseases
  • risk factors
  • prevention
  • treatment
  • treatment planning
  • systematic reviews
  • gingival diseases
  • periodontal diseases
  • quality of life
  • research methods

Published Papers (12 papers)

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Editorial

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Editorial
Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children—Special Issue
Children 2021, 8(8), 674; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/children8080674 - 03 Aug 2021
Viewed by 452
Abstract
Oral diseases still pose a significant health burden affecting over 3 [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children)

Research

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Article
Self-Reported Dental Caries by Mexican Elementary and Middle-School Schoolchildren in the Context of Socioeconomic Indicators: A National Ecological Study
Children 2021, 8(4), 289; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/children8040289 - 08 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 556
Abstract
The objective of the present research was to quantify the association between dental caries self-report and socioeconomic indicators in Mexican children. An ecological study included a self-report of dental caries in schoolchildren enrolled in public elementary and middle schools derived from the National [...] Read more.
The objective of the present research was to quantify the association between dental caries self-report and socioeconomic indicators in Mexican children. An ecological study included a self-report of dental caries in schoolchildren enrolled in public elementary and middle schools derived from the National School Health Survey. A total of 73,560 schoolchildren (representing 19,745,366 students) aged 5 to 16 years were included. Socioeconomic variables included were scales depicting physical characteristics of housing, purchasing power, etc. used in national surveys in Mexico to measure deprivation, poverty, and income inequality in official data. Data were analyzed in Stata using Spearman’s correlation test. For the most part, no association (p > 0.05) was found between caries self-report, socioeconomic variables, or the Gini index. However, caries self-report in elementary schoolchildren and total (elementary + middle-school) schoolchildren groups was positively correlated (p < 0.05) with two poverty variables: extreme poverty by income (value of personal food purchases per month) and poverty by income (value of personal food and non-food purchases per month). National data for dental caries self-report were associated—at the ecological level—with a few socioeconomic indicators but not with most of the usual and customary indicators used in national surveys in Mexico. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children)
Article
The Effect of Well Child Visit Location on Preventative Dental Visit
Children 2021, 8(3), 191; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/children8030191 - 03 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 594
Abstract
Recent emphasis has been placed on the integration of dental and medical primary care in an effort to promote recommendations from both American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) that highlight the importance of preventing, intervening, and managing [...] Read more.
Recent emphasis has been placed on the integration of dental and medical primary care in an effort to promote recommendations from both American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) that highlight the importance of preventing, intervening, and managing oral disease in childhood. The study aims to provide a population level insight into the role of location of service of medical well-child visit (WCV) and its association to preventative dental visit (PDV) for children between the ages of 0–20 years. Administrative claims data for 3.17 million Medicaid-enrolled children aged 0 to 20 years of age in 13 states in 2016 and 2017 were identified from the IBM Watson MarketScan Medicaid Database. Descriptive and survival analysis reveals most Medicaid enrolled children receive their WCV at an office and hospital, as compared to federally qualified health center, or rural or public health clinic. Further, this study demonstrates increased utilization of dental preventive services for children who receive a WCV. Hispanic children, female children, and children 5–9 years of age had a higher rate of PDV after a WCV at all three locations. This study contributes to the understanding of medical-dental integration among Medicaid-enrolled children and offers insight into the promotion of oral health prevention within medical primary care. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children)
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Article
A Cost Analysis of an Outreach School-Based Dental Program: Teeth on Wheels
Children 2021, 8(2), 154; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/children8020154 - 18 Feb 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 821
Abstract
Background: This study evaluated an outreach mobile dental service called Teeth on Wheels (TOW). The dental program targeted Australian children from low household income, who are eligible for the Child Dental Benefits Scheme (CDBS) in Victoria, Australia. The program is complemented with a [...] Read more.
Background: This study evaluated an outreach mobile dental service called Teeth on Wheels (TOW). The dental program targeted Australian children from low household income, who are eligible for the Child Dental Benefits Scheme (CDBS) in Victoria, Australia. The program is complemented with a school-based oral health promotion element. Methods: A retrospective cohort study was performed with a convenience sample. Children must have had at least three dental examinations during the 2016–2019 calendar years to be included in the study. Comparisons were made between the 2016–17 and 2018–19 calendar years. It was hypothesised that the program would result in reduced costs and the number of restorations and extractions in the latter period. Results: A total of 414 children were included in the analysis. The total mean costs of the program per child reduced from AU$605.3 in 2016–17 to AU$531.1 in 2018–19. The results showed an overall mean reduction in all restorations and extractions performed, but only statistical significance was noted for reductions of restored deciduous teeth. Conclusions: This outreach program, which is focused on prevention and minimally invasive dentistry, can be a promising alternative model of delivery for dental services in young children. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children)
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Article
Oral Health Status and Patterns of Dental Service Utilization of Adolescents in Lesotho, Southern Africa
Children 2021, 8(2), 120; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/children8020120 - 07 Feb 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 712
Abstract
This study aimed to characterize the best predictors for unmet dental treatment needs and patterns of dental service utilization by adolescents in the Kingdom of Lesotho, Southern Africa. A self-reported 40-item oral health survey was administered, and clinical oral examinations were conducted in [...] Read more.
This study aimed to characterize the best predictors for unmet dental treatment needs and patterns of dental service utilization by adolescents in the Kingdom of Lesotho, Southern Africa. A self-reported 40-item oral health survey was administered, and clinical oral examinations were conducted in public schools in Maseru from August 10 to August 25, 2016. Associations between psychosocial factors with oral health status and dental service utilization were evaluated using simple, bivariate, and multivariate regressions. Five hundred and twenty-six survey responses and examinations were gathered. The mean age of student participants was 16.4 years of age, with a range between 12 and 19 years of age. More than two thirds (68%; n = 355) of participants were female. The majority reported their quality of life (84%) and general health to be good/excellent (81%). While 95% reported that oral health was very important, only 11% reported their personal dental health as excellent. Three percent reported having a regular family dentist, with the majority (85%) receiving dental care in a hospital or medical clinic setting; only 14% had seen a dental professional within the previous two years. The majority of participants did not have dental insurance (78%). Clinical examination revealed tooth decay on 30% of mandibular and maxillary molars; 65% had some form of gingivitis. In multivariate analysis, not having dental education and access to a regular dentist were the strongest predictors of not visiting a dentist within the last year. Our results suggest that access to oral health care is limited in Lesotho. Further patient oral health education and regular dental care may make an impact on this population. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children)
Article
Experience and Prevalence of Dental Caries in 6 to 12-Year-Old School Children in an Agricultural Community: A Cross-Sectional Study
Children 2021, 8(2), 99; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/children8020099 - 03 Feb 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 580
Abstract
Objective: To describe the experience and prevalence of dental caries in schoolchildren aged 6–12 years belonging to agricultural manual worker households. Material and Methods: A comparative cross-sectional study was conducted in two groups of schoolchildren: One considered “children of agricultural worker migrant parents” [...] Read more.
Objective: To describe the experience and prevalence of dental caries in schoolchildren aged 6–12 years belonging to agricultural manual worker households. Material and Methods: A comparative cross-sectional study was conducted in two groups of schoolchildren: One considered “children of agricultural worker migrant parents” (n = 157) and the other “children of agricultural worker non-migrant parents” (n = 164). Epidemiological indices for dental caries were calculated for primary (dmft) and permanent (DMFT) dentitions, and compared in terms of age, sex, and the Simplified Oral Hygiene Index (SOHI). Two binary logistic regression models for caries prevalence in primary and permanent dentitions were generated in Stata. Results: For primary dentition, we observed the following dmft index: Non-migrants = 1.73 ± 2.18 vs. migrants = 1.68 ± 2.14. Additionally, we recorded the following caries prevalence: Non-migrants = 59.1% vs. migrants = 51.3%. For permanent dentition, we observed the following DMFT index: Non-migrants = 0.32 ± 0.81 vs. migrants = 0.29 ± 0.95. Further, we recorded the following caries prevalence: Non-migrants = 17.6% vs. migrants = 12.8%. No differences were observed for either dentition (p > 0.05) in caries indices and their components or in caries prevalence. When both caries indices (dmft and DMFT) were combined, the non-migrant group had a higher level of caries experience than the migrant group (p < 0.05). No relationship (p > 0.05) with migrant status was observed in either multivariate models of caries prevalence. However, age did exhibit an association (p < 0.05) with caries. Only the plaque component of SOHI was associated (p < 0.05) with caries in permanent dentition. Conclusions: Although over half of school children from agricultural manual worker households had caries in either or both dentitions and a considerable proportion were untreated lesions, the prevalence levels were somewhat lower than other reports from Mexico in similar age groups. No statistically significant differences were found in caries experience or prevalence in either dentition between non-migrant and migrant groups. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children)
Article
Safety and Effects of the Rapid Maxillary Expander on Temporomandibular Joint in Subjects Affected by Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis: A Retrospective Study
Children 2021, 8(1), 33; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/children8010033 - 07 Jan 2021
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 856
Abstract
Background: In Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) temporo-mandibular joints are often affected causing skeletal and dental malocclusions. The most frequent condition is mandibular hypoplasia, that may be associated with maxillary hypoplasia. The aim of this retrospective case control study is to investigate the effects [...] Read more.
Background: In Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) temporo-mandibular joints are often affected causing skeletal and dental malocclusions. The most frequent condition is mandibular hypoplasia, that may be associated with maxillary hypoplasia. The aim of this retrospective case control study is to investigate the effects and the safety of rapid maxillary expansion (RME) in growing patients affected by JIA. It was evaluated whether RME could be performed without complications on TMJs of JIA patients using DC/TMD protocol, and naso-maxillary transversal parameters were compared with the ones obtained on healthy patients. Methods: Twenty-five patients affected by JIA that ceased to manifest TMJ (Temporo-Mandibular Joint) symptoms in the previous year were treated with RME to solve the maxillary transverse hypoplasia. Postero-anterior cephalometric tracings were collected before and after treatment; linear measurements were obtained to study maxillary and nasal cavity modifications. Data were compared to those of a similar group of twenty-five healthy patients. Paired t-test and Independent t-test were used to evaluate changes before and after treatment in each group and to perform a comparison between the groups. Results: All patients demonstrated a statistically significant increase in nasal cavity width, maxillary width and upper and lower intermolar width. No patients presented a worsening of their TMJs condition. Intragroup comparisons revealed significant changes of cephalometric measurements, but no difference was found when comparing JIA and healthy patients. Conclusions: Growing patients with JIA that ceased to show signs of active TMJ involvement for at least one year could be safely treated with RME, expecting similar benefits to those of healthy patients. Dentists and rheumatologists should be informed of safety and potential benefits of palatal expansion in JIA patients in order to improve the outcome of orthodontic treatment and reduce the indication for more invasive procedures (i.e., Surgical Assisted Rapid Maxillary Expansion). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children)
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Article
Psychometric Analyses of the Indian (Hindi) Version of the Child Perception Questionnaire (CPQ11–14)
Children 2020, 7(10), 175; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/children7100175 - 09 Oct 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 880
Abstract
The current research aims to evaluate the reliability and validity of the Hindi Child Perception Questionnaire (CPQ11–14) in a child population of India. A randomly selected sample of children aged 11–14 years (n = 331) and their parents completed the [...] Read more.
The current research aims to evaluate the reliability and validity of the Hindi Child Perception Questionnaire (CPQ11–14) in a child population of India. A randomly selected sample of children aged 11–14 years (n = 331) and their parents completed the Hindi translation of CPQ11–14 and the Parental-Caregiver Perceptions Questionnaire (P-CPQ), respectively, in this cross-sectional study. Children also provided a self-rating of oral health and were examined for dental caries. Exploratory Factor Analysis (EFA) was conducted to assess the dimensionality of the Hindi-CPQ11–14. Internal consistency and reliability on repeated administration were evaluated. Convergent and divergent validities were determined by estimating correlation coefficients between items and the hypothesised subscales. Concurrent validity was assessed using multiple linear regression analyses. The four factors extracted in EFA had a total variance of 38.5%, comprising 31 items. Cronbach’s alpha for the internal consistency of the overall scale was 0.90; reliability on repeated administration was 0.92. All the Hindi CPQ11–14 items had an item-hypothesised subscale correlation coefficient of ≥0.4, and these were greater than item-other hypothesised subscale correlations, demonstrating good convergent and divergent validities respectively. Hindi-CPQ11–14 was associated with self-ratings of the oral health and overall P-CPQ scores demonstrating good concurrent validity. Hindi-CPQ11–14 showed a factor structure different from the English CPQ11–14 and exhibited good validity and reliability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children)

Review

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Review
Evaluation of Serum and Salivary Iron and Ferritin Levels in Children with Dental Caries: A Meta-Analysis and Trial Sequential Analysis
Children 2021, 8(11), 1034; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/children8111034 - 11 Nov 2021
Viewed by 314
Abstract
Background and objective: Dental caries appears to be related to iron deficiency anemia and to low ferritin levels. In the present meta-analysis, we report salivary and serum iron and ferritin levels in children with dental caries, compared to healthy controls. Materials and methods: [...] Read more.
Background and objective: Dental caries appears to be related to iron deficiency anemia and to low ferritin levels. In the present meta-analysis, we report salivary and serum iron and ferritin levels in children with dental caries, compared to healthy controls. Materials and methods: We searched in Web of Science, Cochrane Library, Scopus, and PubMed/Medline databases to extract studies published until 25 July 2021. We calculated mean differences (MD) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) of salivary and serum iron and ferritin levels in children with dental caries, always compared to healthy controls. In addition, we applied a trial sequential analysis (TSA). Results: A total of twelve articles covering thirteen studies were included in the meta-analysis. The pooled MD for salivary iron level was −5.76 µg/dL (p = 0.57), and −27.70 µg/dL (p < 0.00001) for serum iron level: compared to healthy controls, children with dental caries did not show different salivary iron levels, while children with caries had significantly lower serum iron levels. The pooled MD of salivary ferritin level was 34.84 µg/dL (p = 0.28), and the pooled MD of serum ferritin level was −8.95 µg/L (p = 0.04): compared to healthy controls, children with dental caries did not have different salivary iron levels, but significantly lower serum ferritin levels. Conclusions: The findings of the present meta-analysis showed that salivary levels of iron and ferritin did not differ between children with and without caries, though compared to healthy controls, children with caries had significantly lower salivary and serum iron and ferritin levels. The results are of practical and clinical importance: Possibly, iron and ferritin supplementation might prevent or attenuate dental caries in children at risk. Further, children with caries might suffer from further iron- and ferritin-related health issues. Lastly, serum blood samples, but not saliva samples inform accurately about the current iron and ferritin concentrations in children with or without caries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children)
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Review
The Most Common Vitamin D Receptor Polymorphisms (ApaI,FokI, TaqI, BsmI, and BglI) in Children with Dental Caries: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
Children 2021, 8(4), 302; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/children8040302 - 15 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 531
Abstract
Vitamin D participates in the calcification of enamel and dentin and the appropriate immune responses to oral microbial infections. We aimed to assess the association between the most common vitamin D receptor (VDR) polymorphisms (ApaI,FokI, TaqI, BsmI [...] Read more.
Vitamin D participates in the calcification of enamel and dentin and the appropriate immune responses to oral microbial infections. We aimed to assess the association between the most common vitamin D receptor (VDR) polymorphisms (ApaI,FokI, TaqI, BsmI, and BglI) and the risk of dental caries in children. Methods: PubMed/MEDLINE, Cochrane Library, Web of Science, and Scopus databases were comprehensively searched until 19 January 2021. Meta-analysis with odds ratios as the effect estimate along with 95% confidence intervals and subgroup analysis were conducted using Review Manager 5.3 software. Publication bias and sensitivity analyses were conducted by Comprehensive Meta-Analysis, version 2.0 software. Results: Seventy-eight studies were retrieved from the databases, with nine studies included in the final analysis. Based on five genetic models, there was no association between ApaI (rs7975232), TaqI (rs731236), BsmI (rs1544410), FokI (rs2228570), and BglI (rs739837) polymorphisms and susceptibility to dental caries, except for the FokI (rs10735810) polymorphism. Conclusion: Among the VDR polymorphisms considered, an association was found between the FokI (rs10735810) polymorphism and the risk of dental caries, with a protective role of the f allele and ff genotype. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children)
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Review
Correlation between Malocclusion and Allergic Rhinitis in Pediatric Patients: A Systematic Review
Children 2020, 7(12), 260; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/children7120260 - 27 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1077
Abstract
Background: Oral breathing, nasal obstruction and airway space reduction are usually reported as associated to allergic rhinitis. They have been linked to altered facial patterns and dento-skeletal changes. However, no firm correlation based on the evidence has been established. This systematic review has [...] Read more.
Background: Oral breathing, nasal obstruction and airway space reduction are usually reported as associated to allergic rhinitis. They have been linked to altered facial patterns and dento-skeletal changes. However, no firm correlation based on the evidence has been established. This systematic review has been undertaken to evaluate the available evidence between malocclusion and allergic rhinitis in pediatric patients. Methods: The research refers to Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses Protocols (PRISMA-P) guidelines, databases (Medline, Cochrane Library, Pubmed, Embase and Google Scholar) were screened, the quality was evaluated through Quality Assessment of Diagnosfic Accuracy Studies (QUADAS-2). Results: The articles selected (6 out of initial 1782) were divided on the basis of the study design: two observational randomized study, three case–control study, one descriptive cross-sectional study, and one longitudinal study. A total of 2188 patients were considered. Different results were reported as related to allergic rhinitis ranging from a higher incidence of dental malocclusion, to an increase of palatal depth, and in posterior cross-bite about anterior open-bite and to longer faces and shorter maxillas. Conclusions: Most of the studies selected found a rise in the prevalence of both malocclusion and allergic rhinitis in children. However, the level of bias is high, impaired by a poor design and no conclusive evidence can be drawn. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children)
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Other

Case Report
Comprehensive Treatment of a Skeletal Class III Growing Patient with Alveolar Bone Hypertrophy in the Anterior Mandible Associated with Becker’s Nevus Syndrome: A Case Report
Children 2021, 8(2), 72; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/children8020072 - 21 Jan 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 577
Abstract
Becker’s nevus is a relatively common skin lesion with brown hyperpigmentation and hypertrichosis. It may be expressed simultaneously with other cutaneous, muscular, or skeletal defects, such as hypoplasia of the breast or scoliosis, for which the term “Becker’s nevus syndrome” has been proposed. [...] Read more.
Becker’s nevus is a relatively common skin lesion with brown hyperpigmentation and hypertrichosis. It may be expressed simultaneously with other cutaneous, muscular, or skeletal defects, such as hypoplasia of the breast or scoliosis, for which the term “Becker’s nevus syndrome” has been proposed. An 8-year-old boy presented with a Becker’s nevus on the right cheek, chin, and upper neck with alveolar bone hypertrophy in the anterior mandible, which led to an anterior crossbite and severe canting of the mandibular anterior teeth. Through orthopedic treatment using a face mask, the anteroposterior jaw relationship was improved. In phase 2 treatment, we corrected the canting of the mandibular anterior teeth with a segmental intrusion of the mandibular anterior right teeth into the hypertrophic alveolar bone area. The facial profile was improved along with acceptable occlusion, and the treatment result was stable at 1 year after the end of the treatment, without any periodontal attachment loss, root resorption of mandibular anterior teeth, or increase in the size of the hypertrophic region. This case report describes the successful comprehensive treatment of a growing patient with skeletal Class III malocclusion and multiple characteristics of Becker’s nevus syndrome. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Caries and Oral Health in Children)
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