Impact of Tooth Loss on Individuals with Unrestored Partially Edentulous Arch in Southwestern Nigeria - A Preliminary Survey
The impact of tooth loss on individual with unrestored partial edentulous space in the southwestern part of Nigeria was assessed. The study was a prospective study of 160 partially edentulous subjects. Trained dentist administered a validated questionnaire. Information sought included, sociodemographics, duration, of tooth loss, causes of tooth loss and reason for replacement. Data analysis was done using descriptive statistics & Chi Square. Mean age of subjects was 45.06+/- 14.22 years. Majority (63.1%) of subjects were traders. Eighty percent of participants were married. More than half (53.1%) of studied population resides in Lagos. Commonest cause of tooth loss was caries (42.5%). Impact on tooth loss showed negative impact on the smile (16.2%), speech (10.6%), mastication (30%), and self-confidence (13.7%). Less than half of the population (43.1%) was indifferent to replacement. Acceptability of appearance following tooth loss was influenced by marital status (p<0.05), location of teeth on the arch (p<0.05). Denture was believed to be a treatment option for tooth loss (p<0.05). There was adverse effect of tooth loss on mastication but little subjective effect on confidence, smiling, and speech. The major reason for not replacing was due to an indifferent attitude (50%) to replacement option and lack of awareness (24.4%). Aesthetics was a strong determinant for replacement.