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A Primer on Edentulism

Learning Objectives:  

After listening to and reviewing this podcast, the listener should:
  • Understand the characteristics and symptoms of the condition know as edentulism
  • Know how to diagnose edentulism in patients

Edentulism is the state of being without natural teeth. Before exploring its treatment, a diagnosis of edentulism needs to incorporate a thorough understanding of the disease process. This includes the consequences of tooth loss and an understanding of how it affects treatment decisions. This impairment has all the characteristics of a chronic disease--edentulism is incurable, it is functionally and psychologically disruptive, and it requires specific management strategies to either overcome or limit these disruptive effects. Edentulous people exhibit a wide range of anatomic variations and health concerns. As a result, classifying all edentulous patients as a single diagnostic group is insensitive to the diversity of conditions and to the variety of treatment procedures required to restore function and comfort.

Related Reading:

 

  1. World Health Organization. International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health. Geneva, Switzerland; 2001.
  2. Feine JS, Carlsson GE. Implant Overdentures: The Standard of Care for Edentulous Patients. Carol Stream, IL: Quintessence Publishing, 2003.
  3. McGarry TJ, Nimmo A, Skiba JF, et al. Classification system for complete edentulism. The American College of Prosthodontics. J Prosthodont 1999;8(1):27-39.
  4. Tallgren A. The continuing reduction of the residual alveolar ridges in complete denture wearers: a mixed longitudinal study covering 25 years. J Prosthet Dent 1972;27(2):120-132.
  5. Geissler CA, Bates JF. The nutritional effects of teeth loss. Am J Clin Nutr 1984;39(3)478-489.
  6. Sheiham A, Steele JG, Marcenes W, et al. The impact of oral health on stated ability to eat certain foods; findings from the national diet and nutrition survey of older people in Great Britain. Gerodontology. 1999;16(1):11-20.
  7. Sheiham A, Steele J. Does the condition of the mouth and teeth affect the ability to eat certain foods, nutrients and dietary intake and nutritional status amongst older people? Public Health Nutr 2001;4(3):797-803.
  8. Wayler AH, Chauncey HH. Impact of complete dentures and impaired natural dentition on masticatory performance and food choice in healthy aging men. J Prosthet Dent 1983;49(3):427-433.
  9. Hinds K, Gregory JR. National diet and nutrition survey. People aged 65 years or over. Vol 2: Report of the oral health survey. London: Stationary Office, 1998.
  10. Sheiham A, Steele JG, Marcenes W, et al. The relationship among dental status, nutrient intake, and nutritional status in older people. J Dent Res 2001;80(2):408-413.
  11. Fontijn-Tekamp FA, van’t Hof MA, Slagter AP, van Waas MA. The state of dentition in relation to nutrition in elderly Europeans in the SENECA study of 1993. Eur J Clin Nutr 1996;50(2):117-122.
  12. MacEntee MI, Hill PM, Wong G, et al. Predicting concerns for oral health among institutionalized elders. J Public Health Dent 1991;51(2):82-90.

 

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