Resilience and self-perceived oral health: a hierarchical approach

Aline Blaya Martins, Camila Mello Dos Santos, Juliana Balbinot Hilgert, Renato José de Marchi, Fernando Neves Hugo, Dalva Maria Pereira Padilha
Journal of the American Geriatrics Society 2011, 59 (4): 725-31

OBJECTIVES: To determine whether positive self-perceived oral health is associated with sociodemographic health variables, with an emphasis on resilience, in community-dwelling older adults in southern Brazil.

DESIGN: Cross-sectional study nested within a cohort study.

SETTING: Carlos Barbosa in southern Brazil.

PARTICIPANTS: Four hundred ninety-six community-dwelling adults aged 64 and older.

MEASUREMENTS: Sociodemographic information, a health history, and health perceptions were assessed using a structured questionnaire. Resilience was assessed using a resilience scale. For each participant, a brief oral examination was performed to assess number of teeth. Positive self-perceived oral health was the outcome of interest.

RESULTS: A final, fully adjusted Poisson regression model showed that high resilience potential (prevalence ratio (PR)=1.18, 95% confidence interval (CI)=1.06-1.32), income (PR=1.18, 95% CI=1.07-1.30), and no reported change in diet because of dental problems (PR=1.34, 95% CI=1.13-1.60) were associated with positive self-perceived oral health. Participants living in rural areas were less likely to report positive self-perceived oral health (PR=0.83, 95% CI=0.75-0.93).

CONCLUSION: Using a hierarchical approach, positive self-perceived oral health was found to be associated with several variables included in the conceptual framework of oral health outcomes, such as resilience. Resilience may act as a potentiating agent in the positive adaptation to tooth loss.


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