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Design: Prospective longitudinal population-based birth cohort study.
Do children who have oral habits (thumb-sucking or nail-biting) have a lower risk of developing atopic sensitisation, asthma and hay fever?
Setting: Dunedin, New Zealand, participants born in 1972–1973.
Cohorts: A birth cohort of 1037 participants was asked multiple questions at multiple time points. For this study, ‘oral habits’ (frequently sucked their finger/thumb or bit their nails) were assessed at 5, 7, 9 and 11 years.
Outcomes: 11 or 12 panel skin prick testing at age 13 and 32 years. Atopic sensitisation was defined as having ≥1 positive response to an allergen. Asthma was diagnosed …
Correspondence to Dr Fozia Roked, Birmingham Children's Hospital, Steelhouse Lane, Birmingham B4 6NH, UK;
Contributors FR drafted the abstract/summary of original paper being picketed. JN drafted the commentary.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.