I will pay for the following article Research proposal. The work is to be 3 pages with three to five sources, with in-text citations and a reference page. Applied Research Proposal First Middle initial and of Prof. First and of lecturer November 14, 2011 Research Problem A diet rich in sugar is a significant contributor to dental caries among children (Tougher-Decker & Loveren, 2003). The rate of dental caries among 1st to 6th grade students in the urban school districts of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma is significantly high. As a result, many researchers have considered substituting sugar based snacks with xylitol based snacks as an important measure to reduce dental caries among children (Lam, Riedy, Coldwell, Milgrom, & Craig, 2000). However, currently there are no programs in the urban school districts of Oklahoma to test the effect of xylitol based snacks on children. Hence, the intent of this research is to implement and measure the changes in rate of dental caries among children in the urban school districts of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Methodology This study is intended to implement and measure the difference (if any) in the occurrence of dental caries among children in seven urban school districts of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The study is developed based on the educational recommendations and research literature that indicate that substituting sugar with xylitol in snacks eaten by children is a very promising option. This is so because xylitol has powerful anti-cariogenic and tooth protecting properties (Lam, Riedy, Coldwell, Milgrom, & Craig, 2000). Xylitol is also known to significantly reduce the levels of Streptococcus mutans in saliva and plaque, which are the main causes for tooth decay (Lynch & Milgrom, 2003). Sample About 2000 children from the 1st to 6th grade from six urban schools of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma will be randomly selected for this study. These children will be randomly assigned to either the treatment group or the control group. Children in the treatment group will be given xylitol based gummy worms and cookies while those in the control group will continue to eat the regular snacks available in the school cafeteria. Children from all racial and ethnic backgrounds will be equally distributed between the treatment and control groups. Children will also be classified based on their gender and will be equally represented in the treatment and control groups. Instrumentation The dmft (decayed, missing and filled teeth) score for the primary teeth and DMFT (decayed, missing and filled teeth) score for the permanent teeth will be used to assess the dental health of children. Both these scores are assigned after a systematic examination of the crown and exposed root of every primary and permanent tooth using a mirror and explorer. Following the examination, each crown and root will be assigned a number which is recorded in boxes corresponding to each tooth in the dmft/DMFT score chart. Care will be taken to record all ‘tooth colored’ fillings which are usually difficult to detect. Data Collection Each participating child, enrolled in the study, will be examined by a dentist and given a dmft/DMFT score. This dmft/DMFT score will establish the baseline for each child. Under the supervision of their teacher, each child in the treatment group will be provided xylitol based snacks during the two snack breaks in school, while those in the control group will be provided the regular sucrose or sorbitol based food items that are currently available in the school cafeteria. The study will be implemented in the month of August 2012 and the dental health of the treatment group and control group will be monitored for a period of eight years. Informed consent will be collected from the parents of each child participating in the study. Principals of schools will be contacted to gain approval for this study and to ensure their commitment and participation in this study. The research proposal for this study will also be sent to the institutional review board at the University of Oklahoma for approval. The data collected for each participating child will be used only for the purposes of this research study and will not be disclosed to any third party. Each child will be given a card which would have a unique code for the child and would be used for this research. All data pertaining to a child will be collected and recorded under the specific code for the child. The names and corresponding unique code of each child will be recorded in a file and will be under the possession of the project coordinator. The dentists will conduct repeat tests for a small group of 50 children each year to determine the test-retest reliability. For this research, four dentists will be hired and they will be required to undergo training and calibration before examining the students. This is to ensure their reliability with other dentists and with themselves. Data Analysis Data will be analyzed using SPSS software. If any child drops out of the study at any point of time, the previous data of that child will still be used for data analysis. This is so, because using only complete data may reduce the sample size to an inadequate number, in which case, the results cannot be generalized to the intended population. The mean number of dmft/DMFT score for children between the ages of 6-8, 8-10 and 10 to 12 will also be assessed. Dentists will also examine each child after every 12 months so that the changes in dmft/DMFT score can be monitored. References Lam, M., Riedy, C.A., Coldwell, S.E., Milgrom, P., & Craig, R. (2000). Children’s acceptance of xylitol-based foods. Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, 28(2), 97-101. Retrieved from http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1034/j.1600-0528.2000.028002097.x/abstract Lynch, H., &Milgrom, P. (2003). Xylitol and dental caries: An overview for clinicians. Journal of the California Dental Association, 31(3), 205-209. Retrieved from http://www.cdafoundation.org/library/docs/jour0303/March_B_2003_CDA_127DD5.pdf Touger-Decker, R., & Loveren, C. V. (2003). Sugars and dental caries. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 78(4), 8815-8925. Retrieved from http://www.ajcn.org/content/78/4/881S.full.