Department of Stomatology, University of Tartu, Tartu, Estonia. email@example.com
INTRODUCTION: It is well established that severe periodontitis clusters in families, but there are no data about the relationship between mothers with chronic periodontitis and their children's periodontal status. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate a risk for periodontal diseases in children of periodontally diseased and healthy mothers. METHODS: Four study groups were included: (I) 20 female patients with untreated generalized severe chronic periodontitis, (II) their children (34), (III) 13 periodontally healthy mothers and (IV) their children (13). Material was collected from years 2004-2006. The clinical examination included registration of visible plaque index, modified gingival index and, bleeding sites on probing. Periodontal microbiological samples were obtained from all study subjects and the isolates were identified according to morphology and biochemical profiles; similar interfamilial pathogens were compared by PCR-technique. RESULTS: The children of diseased mothers more frequently had periodontal diseases, especially gingivitis. In addition, clinical parameters of gingival inflammation were more expressed and oral hygiene was worse in this group of children. VPI and VPI% of the diseased and healthy mothers differed significantly. The most common oral pathogens were P. intermedia/nigrescens and A. actinomycetemcomitans. The children of healthy mothers harboured pathogens less frequently than the children of diseased mothers. The sharing of P. intermedia/nigrescens was more frequent (5 families) than A. actinomycetemcomitans (2 families). CONCLUSION: Maternal indicators, such as periodontitis, hygiene habits, and periodontal microflora are risk factors for childhood periodontal diseases, and might be predictive of future childhood and adolescent periodontitis.