Skip Navigation

OH-3.3 Data Details

OH-3.3 Reduce the proportion of adults aged 75 years and older with untreated root surface caries

About the Data

Description of the data source, numerator, denominator, survey questions, and other relevant details about the national estimate.

National Data Source
National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES); Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics (CDC/NCHS)
Changed Since the Healthy People 2020 Launch
Baseline (Year)
37.9 (1999-2004)
Target-Setting Method
10 percent improvement
Number of persons aged 75 and older with coronal or root caries that have not been restored observed in at least one tooth
Number of adults aged 75 and older who have at least one permanent tooth present and valid codes for coronal or root caries on at least one tooth
Comparable Healthy People 2010 Objective
Not applicable
Methodology Notes

Untreated dental decay is defined as the presence of untreated caries. Caries is the disease that causes tooth decay and can lead to cavities in teeth. This indicator is tracked using the Oral Health Examination component of the Continuous National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, collected since 1999. The measurement protocol has been described. Data on missing primary teeth are not captured by NHANES. Indicators of caries in primary teeth omit missing teeth to avoid potential misclassification of teeth lost to natural exfoliation as missing due to caries.


Additional resources about the objective.

  1. Dye BA, Barker, LK, Selwitz RH, Lewis BG, Wu T, Fryar CD, et al. Overview and quality assurance for the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) oral health component, 1999–2002. Community Dent Oral Epidemiol 35:140–51. 2007.
  2. Vargas, C.; Schober, S.; and Gift, H. Operational definitions for year 2000 objectives: Priority area 13, Oral Health. Healthy People 2000 Statistical Notes, No. 12. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), 1997.