Maternal depression in first 1000 days of life and early childhood caries prevalence at 48 months of age

Catarina Borges da Fonseca Cumerlato, Mariana Gonzalez Cademartori, Fernando Celso Barros, Andréa Homsi Dâmaso, Mariângela Freitas da Silveira, Pedro Curi Hallal, Flávio Fernando Demarco, Marcos Britto Corrêa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of maternal’s depression trajectory in the first 1000 days of the child’s life on the prevalence of early childhood dental caries (ECC), in a birth cohort. Materials and methods: All infants born in Pelotas in 2015 were identified, and the mothers were invited to participate in the cohort. A total of 3645 children were included in the study. The outcome was ECC at 48 months of age assessed according to ICDAS. Maternal depression was collected using Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) antenatally, at 3, 12, and 24 months of age. Maternal depressive symptom trajectory variables were created using group-based trajectory models and adopting two cutoff points. Poisson regression model with robust variance was used to identify the total effect of maternal depressive symptom trajectories on ECC, adjusting by confounders. Results: A total of 29.2% of the mothers presented a high trajectory for screening of depression, and 18.8% presented a high trajectory of depression diagnosis. The prevalence of ECC was 26.7%. After adjusted analysis, maternal depression trajectories (screening and diagnosis) from pregnancy to 24 months increased the risk for ECC at 48 months of age (RR = 1.14; 95% CI 1.02–1.28 and RR = 1.19; 95% CI 1.05–1.35). Conclusions: Children from mothers with high depression trajectory had higher risk of having dental caries at 48 months compared to children from mothers with low depression trajectory. Clinical relevance: Strategies of early detection and treatment of maternal mental disorders during the Golden Period should be considered of high priority in health services since it could impact positively in children’s life.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7625-7634
Number of pages10
JournalClinical Oral Investigations
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • Birth cohort
  • Cohort studies
  • Dental caries
  • Depression
  • Epidemiology
  • Preschool child

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Dentistry


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