The emotional effects of tooth loss in partially dentate people attending prosthodontic clinics in dental schools in England, Scotland and Hong Kong: A preliminary investigation

Authors


Department of Sedation and Special Care Dentistry, GKT Dental Institute, Floor 26, Guy's Tower, London SE1 9RT, UK. E-mail: janice.fiske@kcl.ac.uk

Abstract

Aim: To compare the emotional effects of tooth loss in three partially dentate populations. Design: A questionnaire survey. Materials and Methods: A questionnaire was completed by 150 partially dentate subjects undergoing routine prosthodontic care at Guy's, King's and St Thomas's Dental Institute, London; the Dental School, Dundee, Scotland; and the Faculty of Dentistry, University of Hong Kong. Data were analysed using the Chi-square test. Results: Forty nine per cent of all participants reported difficulties in accepting the loss of some of their teeth. People from Dundee were less likely to have difficulties accepting tooth loss (P = 0.001). People from London took longer to come to terms with their tooth loss and were more likely to feel less confident (P < 0.001). Fifty five per cent of all participants restricted their choice of foods and 54 per cent had not enjoyed their food as much as before. Fewer people in Dundee restricted their choice of food (P < 0.001) and were more likely to enjoy their food (P = 0.009). People in Hong Kong were most likely to restrict their choice of food (P = 0.006). Thirty five percent of all subjects felt unprepared for the effects that tooth loss had upon them. People in Hong Kong were more prepared for tooth loss than those in Dundee and London (P = 0.003). In addition, they were less concerned about leaving their dentures out overnight (P = 0.024). Conclusions: The emotional effects of tooth loss were significant in all groups. People from London took longer to come to terms with their tooth loss.

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