ObjectiveTo assess the oral-health-related quality of life (OHRQoL) in a cohort of Irish older patients and explore associations with overall health status.
BackgroundThe impact of oral health conditions on older individuals' quality of life may be influenced by patients' general health status.
Materials and MethodsThis paper reports a cross-sectional study, which analysed baseline data from patients aged over 60years. Patients were recruited from two different environments, namely Cork University Dental Hospital and St. Finbarr's Hospital, to take part in two research studies. All patients completed the Oral Health Impact Profile (OHIP-14) and EuroQol-5D (EQ-5D) questionnaires. All patients provided a comprehensive overview of their general medical status. Data from the Quality of Life questionnaires were analysed to check for differences between healthy and frail elders and explore associations between OHRQoL and general health.
ResultsThe patient sample comprised 146 (44.6%) male and 181 (55.4%) female participants, with a mean (SD) age of 73.96 (6.9). Frail patients reported a higher mean OHIP-14 score compared to non-frail patients (P<0.001). Pearson's correlation analysis showed a negative association between OHIP-14 and EQ-5D scores. Regression analysis showed that among frail individuals, better general health corresponded to poorer OHRQoL. In the non-frail cohort, better general health was related to better OHRQoL, although these results were not statistically significant.
ConclusionsGeneral health was not significantly associated with the way that patients perceive their oral health within this patient cohort. However, factors such as objective oral health, denture wear and patient's expectations may play a role in this association.