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Effect of ageing on oral health-related quality of life

Abhishek Mehta


Elderly population is rising all around the world. By 2050, the number of elderly is expected to rise to two billion, 80% of whom will be living in developing countries. It’s a challenge for countries, especially developing ones, as it put additional burden on their already overburdened health care infrastructure. This phenomenon is accompanied by the rise in the incidence of chronic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and oral health problems like dental caries, periodontal disease and oral cancer. There is no doubt that oral health and general health are related, this interrelationship becomes more pronounced with increasing age. Oral diseases compromise chewing and eating abilities, thereby affecting the nutritional status in the elderly. Similarly, systemic diseases and/or the adverse side effects of their treatments can lead to increased risk of oral diseases, xerostomia, and altered taste sensation. Traditionally oral health program is planned on the basis of clinical assessment of oral diseases in a population by recording various dental indices. However, the simple assessment of the mouth does not answer a question that has been a more recent concern of health research: What is the effect of poor oral conditions on quality of life (QoL)? There is an increased recognition of incorporating oral health-related QoL measures while evaluating oral health. It can be used to measure the impact of various oral diseases on the general population and high-risk groups and to study the success of various preventive and curative procedures on improving the QoL of an individual


Ageing; edentulism; oral health-related quality of life; quality of life

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