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Degree Name

MSAH (Master of Science in Allied Health)


Allied Health

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Randy L. Byington

Committee Members

Deborah L. Dotson, Charles Faust


The objective was to determine if a correlation exists between Streptococcus mutans and DMFT in the oral cavity. This study examined the feasibility of microbial screenings as an additional caries predictor tool. The sample included 108 participants (ages 18-25) in low, moderate, and high socioeconomic groups. Subjects were selected from one dental clinic and one college in Virginia. Subjects were assessed for DMFT, salivary and plaque bacterial load, and CRA. Salivary load positively correlated with the DMFT. Plaque bacterial load and CRA negatively correlated with DMFT. Comparison of salivary bacterial load among economic levels showed higher bacterial loads with lower economic level only. Twice the observed values were found in the low socioeconomic level with CRA. DMFT and economic level showed differences between economic levels. Microbial screenings may be a useful, additional tool in determining caries risk in oral hygiene programs for all income populations.

Document Type

Thesis - restricted


Copyright by the authors.