Determinants and inequality of recurrent aphthous stomatitis in an Indonesian population: a cross sectional study

Herry Novrinda, Catherine Salsabila Azhara, Anton Rahardjo, Atik Ramadhani, Han Dong-Hun

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Introduction: Recurrent Aphthous Stomatitis (RAS) is the most common type of ulceration in the oral cavity which can occur due to several factors. Aims: To determine the factors related to the incidence of RAS and examine the social class inequality in RAS among the Indonesian population using data from the fifth wave of the Indonesian Family Life Survey (IFLS5) in 2014. Methods: This study is a descriptive study with a cross-sectional design using secondary data from IFLS5 data in 2014 (n = 28,410). Socio-economic position (SEP) was calculated by Adult Equivalent Scale and categorized into 4 classes. Outcome is RAS. Mediating factors were psychosocial (stress), eating behavioral (food consumption), and systemic diseases. Descriptive analysis, chi-square and a series of logistic regressions were performed to analyze the data. Odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) were used to report the results. Results: Only 18.39% of IFLS5 respondents experienced the incidence of recurrent aphthous stomatitis in 2014. The bivariate (chi-square) results showed that there was a relationship between the incidence of RAS and the related independent variables. Logistic regression showed the highest possibility of RAS in respondents aged 18–34 years, female, unmarried, high school education level, living in the city, having frequent stress levels, having food habits that frequently drinking soda, sweet foods, chili sauce, fried food and has systemic diseases such as, asthma, cancer, rheumatism, and digestion. The lowest SEP group had the highest probability of occurrence of RAS over the other groups among the different models. Conclusions: There are several factors that determine the incidence of RAS. There was a monotonic gradient of inequality in RAS according to SEP group. This study might be useful to provide information regarding the relationship of determinants factors with the incidence of RAS to prevent it and promote oral health in the future.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1024
JournalBMC Oral Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023


  • Aphthous stomatitis
  • Health surveys
  • Indonesia
  • Socioeconomic disparities in health
  • Ulcer


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