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01.12.2018 | Review | Ausgabe 1/2018 Open Access

Italian Journal of Pediatrics 1/2018

Malocclusion and rhinitis in children: an easy-going relationship or a yet to be resolved paradox? A systematic literature revision

Italian Journal of Pediatrics > Ausgabe 1/2018
Francesca Occasi, Ludovica Perri, Matteo Saccucci, Gabriele Di Carlo, Gaetano Ierardo, Valeria Luzzi, Giovanna De Castro, Giulia Brindisi, Lorenzo Loffredo, Marzia Duse, Antonella Polimeni, Anna Maria Zicari



The relation between nasal flow and malocclusion represents a practical concern to pediatricians, otorhinolaryngologists, orthodontists, allergists and speech therapists. If naso-respiratory function may influence craniofacial growth is still debated. Chronic mouth-breathing is reported to be associated also with a characteristic pattern of dental occlusion. On the other hand, also malocclusion may reduce nasal air flows promoting nasal obstruction. Hereby, the aim of this review was to describe the relationship between rhinitis and malocclusion in children.


An electronic search was conducted using online database including Pubmed, Web of Science, Google Scholar and Embase. All studies published through to January 30, 2017 investigating the prevalence of malocclusion in children and adolescents (aged 0-20 years) affected by rhinitis and the prevalence of rhinitis in children with malocclusion were included. The protocol was registered at PROSPERO - International prospective register of systematic reviews under CRD42016053619.


Ten studies with 2733 patients were included in the analysis. The prevalence of malocclusion in children with rhinitis was specified in four of the studies ranging from as high as 78.2% to as low as 3%. Two out of the studies reported the prevalence of rhinitis in children with malocclusion with a rate ranging from 59.2 to 76.4%.


The results of this review underline the importance of the diagnosis and treatment of the nasal obstruction at an early age to prevent an altered facial growth, but the data currently available on this topic do not allow to establish a possible causal relationship between rhinitis and malocclusion.
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