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Tooth loss and dentures: patients' perspectives.

Jones JA, Orner MB, Spiro A, Kressin NR. Tooth loss and dentures: patients' perspectives. International Dental Journal. 2007 Nov 14; 53(5 Suppl):327-34.

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OBJECTIVE: Despite dramatic improvements in tooth retention around the world, a substantial proportion of older adults have lost natural teeth and many wear removable partial and complete dentures. Problems associated with tooth loss and denture wearing remain important in the context of global ageing. The purpose of this paper is to examine the effects of tooth loss and denture wearing on their day-to-day lives from the patient perspective. DESIGN: Cross-sectional study. SETTING: Greater Boston area, USA. PARTICIPANTS: Community-dwelling older men. METHODS: Brief examination and survey. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Self-reported oral health measures including the single-item self-rating of oral health, the Oral Health Impact Profile (OHIP), the Geriatric Oral Health Assessment Index (GOHAI), Oral-Health-related Quality of Life (OHQOL) and a newly-developed short-form instrument (the DELTA). RESULTS: Men with > or = 25 teeth had better self-rated oral health by all measures. The new, brief DELTA differentiates between dentition/denture groupings as well as or better than existing instruments. Over 80% of men with > or = 25 teeth rated their oral health as excellent, very good or good, compared with 70% of men with no teeth (and dentures) and 54% of men with 1-24 teeth. Avoidance of certain foods discriminates well between dentition groups. To a lesser extent, difficulty with relaxation, pain and distress, and avoidance of going out are associated with tooth loss and/or denture wearing.

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