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Type: Journal article
Title: Tooth loss and chewing incapacity among older adults in Adelaide
Author: Slade, G.
Spencer, A.
Roberts-Thomson, K.
Citation: Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 1996; 20(1):76-82
Issue Date: 1996
ISSN: 1326-0200
Abstract: This study aimed to identify sociodemographic factors associated with edentulism (loss of all teeth) and the average number of teeth lost, and to investigate relationships between tooth loss and chewing capacity. Data were obtained in 1991-92 from a cross-sectional oral epidemiological survey of Adelaide residents aged 60+ years. Interviews with 1160 participants provided information on edentulism while oral examinations among 560 dentate participants and 313 edentulous participants provided information on the number of missing teeth. People were asked if they could chew or bite six common foods. Some 41.1 per cent of persons were edentulous, and nearly half the natural teeth (mean 15.2) were missing among dentate people. Multivariate analyses revealed higher rates of edentulism (P < or = 0.05) for people who were older, female, Australian-born, or holders of pensioner health benefit cards, and for people who left school at an early age, or who did not own their residence. Among dentate people there were more (P < or = 0.05) missing teeth among those who were older, Australian-born, health benefit card holders, and who left school at an early age. Some 37.9 per cent of people reported difficulty chewing at least one food, although 57 per cent of dentate people and virtually all edentulous people wore dentures. Difficulty chewing was associated with tooth loss: 6.1 per cent of people with fewer than nine missing teeth reported difficulty compared with S8.6 per cent of edentulous people (P < 0.01). The findings show substantially compromised oral health among older adults, particularly the oldest-old and disadvantaged groups.
Keywords: Humans
Mouth, Edentulous
Tooth Loss
Multivariate Analysis
Logistic Models
Least-Squares Analysis
Socioeconomic Factors
Middle Aged
South Australia
DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-842X.1996.tb01341.x
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Dentistry publications

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