Study of Health in Pomerania (SHIP): Relationship among socioeconomic and general health factors and dental status among elderly adults in Pomerania
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Department of Prosthodontics and Dental Materials, Center of Oral Health, University of Greifswald, Greifswald, Germany. email@example.com OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to evaluate associations among the dental status, socioeconomic factors, and general health of 1,877 subjects between the ages of 55 and 79. METHOD AND MATERIALS: Socioeconomic information (age, sex, education level) and questions on smoking and alcohol abuse were taken from an interview; income and medical information (number of diseases) were taken from a self-administered questionnaire; and HbA1C and CDT (diabetes and alcoholism markers) were taken from blood analyses. RESULTS: Of the subjects, 73% had a low education level, and 27% of the subjects had a monthly income of < 1,000 Euro and 13% of > 2,000 Euro. Twenty-six percent of the subjects were edentulous, and 29% had 20 or more teeth. The odds ratio of edentulism increased to 9.0 (95% confidence interval = 7.0-11.5) at the ages of 75 to 79 years compared to ages 55 to 79. Logistic regression analyses showed that edentulism was significantly associated with age, low education level, low income, smoking, and alcohol abuse. However, the retention of more than 20 teeth was associated with age. CONCLUSIONS: Age, low income, low education level, smoking, and alcohol abuse seemed to be risk markers for edentulism; whereas, the number of diseases, diabetes, and gender were not.