Introduction. Oral health is a risk factor for interference with cognitive function. The number of teeth lost is associated with of oral health-related quality of life (OHR-QoL).
Schlagwörter: tooth loss, cognitive function, self oral health perception
Objective. This study aimed to examine tooth loss distribution and the impact on OHR-QoL perception in cognitively impaired and cognitively normal groups.
Materials and Methods. This cross-sectional study examined community-dwelling elderly aged ≥60 years in Indonesia. Cognitive status was assessed by a clinical psychotherapist by using the mini mental state examination (MMSE) with a score range of 0-30. Participants with a total score of <25 were defined as having cognitive impairment and normal have total score ≥ 25. Dental status was examined by a dentist involved the number of anterior and posterior teeth lost. An interview was conducted to collect information on socio-demographic characteristics and self-reported perception of oral health and functional status using part of an oral health-related quality of Life (OHR-QoL) questionnaire. The questionnaire used 0-4 scale. A Mann-Whitney test for numerical and Chi-Square for categorical data were used to compare the groups. The Spearman correlation test was used to analyse the correlation between number of anterior teeth lost and self-reported oral health with the MMSE score. For all tests, a p-value < 0.05 was considered statistically significant.
Results. There were 13 subjects in the cognitive impairment group and 42 subjects in the normal cognitive group. The cognitive impairment group showed a significantly lower education level compare to normal groups, p<0.05. There is a significant difference of anterior tooth loss between cognitive impairment compared to normal the group, p<0.05. The Spearman correlation test showed anterior tooth loss related the MMSE score with a weak association (r= -0.294; p<0.05) in our study. The feeling of embarrassment due to the appearance of the teeth was significantly different between the groups, p<0.05. There was a weak correlation between the feeling embarrassed due to the appearance of the teeth with MMSE score (r= 0.298 ; p<0.05).
Conclusion. Elderly with a low education level have cognitive impairment, anterior tooth loss, and feeling embarrassed due to the appearance of their teeth. There is a weak association between anterior tooth loss and feeling embarrassed due to the appearance of the teeth with cognitive function.