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Xerostomia experience in those 60 and older and its correlations with dental care experience

Bols, Miriam (2023) Xerostomia experience in those 60 and older and its correlations with dental care experience. Master Essay, University of Pittsburgh.

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Xerostomia, or dry mouth, is an important risk factor for increased dental disease. Having dry mouth can not only result in more decay and infections but can also result in difficulty chewing, speaking, swallowing, and lower quality of life. This study examines which risk factors are more significantly associated with dry mouth and the experience of those reporting dry mouth with their healthcare providers. A survey was administered to 296 participants via phone and email asking participants to answer both Xerostomia Inventory (XI) and Geriatric Oral Health Assessment Instrument (GOHAI) questions along with questions about demographics, medical history, dental history, and experience with dry mouth. Those having 10-15 medications, self-reporting poor/fair oral health, less dental visits, an emergency treatment visit as their last dental visit, and being female were all more likely to report dry mouth. Less than half of those reporting high symptoms for dry mouth actually self-reported having dry mouth when asked. A majority of those self-reporting dry mouth reported not speaking to their healthcare provider about it and not receiving a diagnosis from their provider. This is of public health significance because it demonstrates how dental and general healthcare providers can better aid their patients in preparing for, understanding, and dealing with dry mouth. The study also helps providers understand which patients may be more likely to experience dry mouth, and therefore helps them better serve those affected by the condition.


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Item Type: Other Thesis, Dissertation, or Long Paper (Master Essay)
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
ContributionContributors NameEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Thesis advisorAlbert, Stevensmalbert@pitt.edusmalbertUNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberFinegold, Daviddnf@pitt.edudnfUNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberPolk, Deborahdpolk@pitt.edudpolkUNSPECIFIED
Date: 17 May 2023
Date Type: Completion
Submission Date: 25 April 2023
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 28
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Multidisciplinary MPH
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master Essay
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: dry mouth, xerostomia, dental care, geriatric, xerostomia inventory, older patients
Date Deposited: 17 May 2023 15:03
Last Modified: 17 May 2023 15:03


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