The impact of ebinyo, a form of dental mutilation, on the malocclusion status in Uganda
Department of Orthodontics, Faculty of Dentistry and WHO Oral Health Collaborating Centre, University of the Western Cape, Cape Town, South Africa; Department of Community Oral Health, Faculty of Dentistry and WHO Oral Health Collaborating Centre, University of the Western Cape, Cape Town, South Africa; P.O. Box 5482, Kampala, Uganda
Introduction: The practice of extraction of ebinyo or false teeth is based on the belief that the rubbing of herbs on the gum (in the region of the canine) or the removal of the primary and/or permanent canine tooth buds will lead to the relief of childhood fevers and diarrhoea. The reported prevalence of this practice in Uganda and neighbouring countries is varied. Objective: A survey carried out in Kampala to determine the occlusal traits of fourteen-year-old children offered an opportunity to assess the effects of ebinyo (a dental mutilation based on local customs and superstitions) on the occlusal status of the sample population. Methods: 402 children aged fourteen years were examined according to the criteria of the Fédération Dentaire Internationale Commission on Classification and Statistics for Oral Conditions method for measuring occlusal traits (COCSTOC-MOT) proposed by Baume et al. (1973). Results: The most common dental anomaly was teeth missing due to extraction or trauma. Canines (28%) and mandibular first molars (28%) exhibited the highest frequency. Missing canines were four times more common in girls than boys, and three times greater in the maxilla than the mandible. Canines also accounted for 12.8% of the malformed teeth observed in the study. Conclusion: The results of this study show that the practice of ebinyo, although carried out early in the life of the child, can impact on the occlusal status in the permanent dentition years later. © BASCD 2005.
adolescent; African medicine; article; female; human; male; tooth extraction; tooth occlusion; Uganda; Adolescent; Dental Occlusion, Traumatic; Female; Humans; Male; Medicine, African Traditional; Tooth Extraction; Uganda