Date of Graduation
School of Dentistry
Christina B. DeBiase.
Older adults are at a higher risk for numerous oral and systemic diseases. Oral conditions experienced by the elderly are believed to be cumulative. The purpose of this study was to determine if a relationship exists between early childhood dental care practices/experiences and perceived oral health needs of persons 60 years of age and older who are participants of three West Virginia facilities for the elderly (N = 90). Individuals were interviewed utilizing a two-part 21-item survey. Data analyses, including analysis of variance and tests of chi square, were conducted using the JMP program. Although individuals felt dental health was important, the majority did not have a dentist of record as a child and were edentulous. Results revealed a direct correlation in caries experience as a child and caries experience as an adult (p ≤ .05). It can be concluded that the lack of early dental intervention has a strong impact on dental health practices and oral health status of adults.
Guzzi, Johnna Marie, "Impact of early childhood perceptions and experiences on oral health practices in later life" (2002). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 1544.