The U.S. Maternal and Child Health Bureauâs Division of Services for Children with Special Health Care Needs (CSHCN) identifies CSHCN as children having or having the risk of psychological abnormalities (developmental, behavioral or emotional) as well as children having or having the risk of chronic physical conditions/diseases beyond the typical needs of children in general. There are more than 14.1 million U.S. children who are CSHCN, and more than 20% of U.S. families have CSHCN. Identifying children as CSHCN, rather than by having specific psychological abnormalities/physical conditions, has improved health care delivery programs, and has resulted in a national surveillance, the National Survey of Childrenâs Health. From the surveillance, it is known that CSHCN are at increased risk of depression, inactivity, and injury. Additionally, tobacco smoke exposure is greater in CSHCN. There could be confounding due to diet, and oral hygiene which were not measured in this study. It is possible that smoking during pregnancy increased the potential for childhood illness, immune system compromise, and enamel hypoplasia, and ultimately caries rather than current exposure to passive smoke. However, in this study, the increase in odds of recent caries and passive smoke were determined not only in pre-school children, but also in school aged children and teenagers who would have mixed dentitions and permanent dentitions as the sample included children ages 0-17. Distinctions were not made between secondhand and third hand smoke exposure nor the number of cigarettes to which a child was exposed or length of time of such exposure in this study.
Children with Special Health Care Needâs Association of Passive Tobacco Smoke Exposure and Dental Caries: 2007 National Survey of Childrenâs Health
R Constance Wiener
Last date updated on June, 2014