Trends in caries and associated variables among young Israeli adults over 5 decades

Harold D. Sgan-Cohen, Joseph Katz, Tuvia Horev, Arieh Dinte, Arieh Eldad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


This study was conducted among a representative sample of 7139 21-year-old Israeli adults, upon release from compulsory military service. Data were collected between 1994 and 1997. The average DMFT level found was 8.49±4.95. Untreated caries (according to the D component of DMFT) was 2.25±2.90 and significantly higher among males. Untreated caries was also significantly associated with geographic origin: higher among subjects of African or former USSR descent; and with family size: higher among subjects with four or more siblings; with education: caries was higher among subjects with less than 12 years of schooling; and with smoking: caries was more extensive among those who smoked (P<0.0001 for all the associations). Caries severity (DMFT) was found to be significantly associated with father's country of origin and number of siblings (highest among subjects of Asian and African descent and those who had four or more siblings). This is the largest and most representative Israeli survey of young adults to date. Data were compared with available data from studies conducted in 1956, 1966, 1973, and 1985. DMFT scores had previously increased from the 1950s until the 1980s. Treatment levels had increased since the 1980s. The present data, together with results of studies conducted among Israeli children, indicate a recent national decrease in caries experience. This study indicates a further increase in caries treatment level, but a persisting inequity according to social variables.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)234-240
Number of pages7
JournalCommunity Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Dental caries
  • Dental epidemiology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Dentistry
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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