Dental caries experience in older people over time: what can the large cohort studies tell us?
ABSTRACT Little was known of the natural history of dental caries among older adults until recently, but reports from a number of large cohort studies have now enabled better understanding of the nature and determinants of dental caries in older people. The aim of this review is to examine and compare findings from established population-based longitudinal studies of older adults in order to determine their preventive implications.
The dental literature was reviewed in order to identify reports on dental caries incidence from large, population-based dental longitudinal studies of older adults (age 50+) with at least 3 years of follow-up.
Reports were identified from four studies (in Iowa, North Carolina, Ontario and South Australia) which met the criteria; four reports dealt with coronal caries, and five with root surface caries. When annualised, coronal and root surface caries increments were combined and compared with those reported for adolescents, the caries experience of older people over time (between 0.8 and 1.2 new surfaces affected per year) exceeded that reported from cohort studies of adolescents (between 0.4 and 1.2 surfaces per year). The only caries risk factor common to all four studies was the wearing of a partial denture (for root surface caries only).
Older people are a caries-active group, experiencing new disease at a rate which is at least as great as that of adolescents.
Dentate older people should be the target of intensive monitoring and preventive efforts at both the clinical practice and public health levels. There is no easily identifiable 'magic bullet' for preventing caries in that age group, but the use of evidence-based preventive interventions (such as fluoride) should suffice.
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ABSTRACT: Data on the oral health of the elderly depict a worrying situation, with an elevated prevalence of caries and moderate periodontal disease, frequent edentulism, and numerous cases of dry mouth and oral cancer. There is wide evidence that periodontitis is a risk factor for certain systemic diseases, and impaired oral health has been associated with mastication and nutritional problems, especially among the elderly, with highly negative effects on their quality of life. In this nonsystematic review, the authors discuss the importance of evaluating the oral health of the geriatric population in a comprehensive manner, beyond simple clinical assessments.Clinical Interventions in Aging 01/2015; 10:461-7. · 2.65 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: This study analyzed how oral hygiene (i.e., brushing, rinsing, and flossing) influences the trajectories of dental caries (i.e., numbers of decayed, missing, and filled teeth) among older Americans within the context of social stratification.Journal of Aging and Health 06/2014; · 1.56 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Objective This paper briefly discusses caries prevalence, the multi-factorial nature of caries etiology, caries risk and the role and efficacy of fluoride. The paper also highlights research on bacterial metabolism which provided understanding of the mouth's natural defenses against caries and the basis for the development of a new technology for the everyday prevention and treatment of caries. Finally, evidence that the technology complements and enhances the anti-caries efficacy of fluoride toothpaste is summarized. Conclusions Global data show that dental caries is a prevalent disease, despite the successful introduction of fluoride. Caries experience depends on the balance between consumption of sugars and oral hygiene and the use of fluoride. Three scientific concepts are fundamental to new measures to detect, treat and monitor caries: (1) dental caries is a dynamic process, (2) dental caries is a continuum of stages from reversible, pre-clinical to irreversible, clinically detectable lesions, and (3) the caries process is a balance of pathological and protective factors that can be modulated to manage caries. Fluoride functions as a protective factor by arresting and reversing the caries process, but fluoride does not prevent pathological factors that initiate the process. A novel technology, based upon arginine and an insoluble calcium compound, has been identified which targets dental plaque to prevent initiation of the caries process by reducing pathological factors. As the mechanisms of action of arginine and fluoride are highly complementary, a new dentifrice, which combines arginine with fluoride, has been developed and clinically proven to provide superior caries prevention.Journal of Dentistry 08/2013; 41:S1–S11. · 2.84 Impact Factor