Associations between social and general health factors and symptoms related to temporomandibular disorders and bruxism in a population of 50-year-old subjects

Anders Johansson, Lennart Unell, Gunnar Carlsson, Björn Söderfeldt, Arne Halling, Fredrik Widar
Acta Odontologica Scandinavica 2004, 62 (4): 231-7
The aim of this epidemiological study was to examine associations between temporomandibular (TMD)-related problems and variables from three domains: (1) socio-economic attributes, (2) general health and health-related lifestyle, and (3) dental attitudes and behaviors. The overall response rate to a questionnaire mailed to the total population of 50-year-old subjects in two Swedish counties (8,888 individuals) was 71%. Among the 53 questions in the questionnaire, those related to social, general health, and health-related factors were used as independent variables in logistic regression models. Three TMD-related symptoms and reported bruxism were used as dependent variables. Impaired general health was the strongest risk factor for reported TMD symptoms. Along with female gender and dissatisfaction with dental care, impaired general health was significantly associated with all three TMD symptoms. A few more factors were associated with pain from the TMJ only. In comparison, reported bruxism showed more significant associations with the independent variables. In addition to the variables associated with TMD symptoms, being single, college/university education, and daily tobacco use were also significantly correlated with bruxism. Besides female gender, impaired general health, dissatisfaction with dental care, and a few social and health-related factors demonstrated significant associations with TMD symptoms and reported bruxism.

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