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Salivary flow rate and periodontal infection – a study among subjects aged 75 years or older

Authors


Anna-Maija Syrjälä, Department of Periodontology and Geriatric Dentistry, Institute of Dentistry, P.O. Box 5281, FI-90401, University of Oulu, Finland. Tel: 358-08-537 5011, Fax: 358-08-537 5560, E-mail: Anna-Maija.Syrjala@oulu.fi

Abstract

Oral Diseases (2011) 17, 387–392

Objective:  To analyse the relation of stimulated and unstimulated salivary flow rates to periodontal infection in home-dwelling elderly people aged 75 years or older.

Subjects and Methods:  This study was based on a subpopulation of 157 (111 women, 46 men) home-dwelling, dentate, non-smoking elderly people (mean age 79.8, SD 3.6 years) from the Geriatric Multidisciplinary Strategy for the Good Care of the Elderly Study). The data were collected by interview and oral clinical examination.

Results:  Persons with very low (<0.7 ml min−1) and low stimulated salivary flow rates (0.7–<1.0 ml min−1) had a decreased likelihood of having teeth with deepened (≥4 mm) periodontal pockets, RR: 0.7, CI: 0.5–0.9 and RR: 0.7, CI: 0.5–0.9, respectively, when compared with those with normal stimulated salivary flow. Persons with a very low unstimulated salivary flow rate (<0.1 ml min−1) had a decreased likelihood of having teeth with deepened (≥4 mm) periodontal pockets, RR 0.8, CI: 0.6–1.0, when compared with subjects with low/normal unstimulated salivary flow.

Conclusions:  In a population of dentate, home-dwelling non-smokers, aged 75 years or older, low stimulated and unstimulated salivary flow rates were weakly associated with a decreased likelihood of having teeth with deep periodontal pockets.

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