To study changes and associated risk factors in 8-year-old children's soiling at three time points: 1989, 1999 and 2005.
Three cross-sectional representative samples were compared. All children born in 1981 (1989 sample, n = 1038), 1991 (1999 sample, n = 1035) and 1997 (2005 sample, n = 1030) living in selected school districts in south-west Finland served as study samples. Parents were asked about the child's soiling at age eight. Information about parental education level, family structure and child psychopathology was obtained from parents, teachers and children.
The prevalence of soiling among 8-year-old boys was very similar (1989/1999/2005: 4.9%/4.9%/4.5%) while among girls the prevalence increased (1.0%/2.9%/3.7%; p