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Fostering Oral Hygiene Habits and Self-Regulation Skills

An Intervention With Preschool Children

Gaeta, Martha Leticia PhD; Cavazos, Judith PhD; Cabrera, Maria del Rosario MEd; Rosário, Pedro PhD

doi: 10.1097/FCH.0000000000000171
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The purpose of this study was to evaluate a program to promote self-regulation for self-care skills in preschool-aged children focused on oral habits and good oral health. Participants were 210 Mexican children aged 4 to 5 years who attended the Children's Assistance Community Centers (CAIC in Spanish). Findings showed that children who participated in the program, compared with those who did not, decreased significantly the teeth-bacteria plaque. The former also improved their self-regulation skills and dental hygiene habits. Data highlighted the key role of close adults in promoting young children's self-regulation for self-care focusing on dental hygiene habits.

Universidad Popular Autónoma del Estado de Puebla, Puebla, México (Drs Gaeta and Cavazos and Ms Cabrera); and Universidade do Minho, Braga, Portugal (Dr Rosário).

Correspondence: Martha Leticia Gaeta, PhD, Universidad Popular Autónoma del Estado de Puebla, 21 Sur 1103, Col. Santiago, 72410, Puebla, México (marthaleticia.gaeta@upaep.mx).

The authors thank the municipal system for the development of the family (DIF in Spanish) who gave their approval for the development of the program.

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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