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Oral Health and Connections to Mental and Physical Health

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Oral Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 June 2023) | Viewed by 25204

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Guest Editor
Division of Comprehensive Prosthodontics, Faculty of Dentistry & Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Niigata University, Niigata 951-8514, Japan
Interests: clinical physiology; geriatric; dentistry; nutrition; cerebral hemodynamic; cognition
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Oral health plays an important role in the essential human activity of eating. If one cannot eat at will, due to the symptoms of inability to chew or swallow, they may not only suffer from psychological effects, but it may also become difficult to nutritionally ingest enough food, resulting in a life-threatening situation. On the other hand, if one has pain in the teeth or jaws, and always eats soft and/or junk foods, they may have secondary health disorder due to obesity or a lack thereof in specific nutrients. In this manner, it is easy to imagine that there is a causal relationship between oral health and mental and physical health, but it remains poorly understood, and it can be said that there is still insufficient evidence.

The relationship between oral health and mental and physical health in one's life may vary from time to time. Oral health is important for early growth development, and it has been reported that mental and physical health is closely related to the condition of oral health in adulthood, as well as in old age. However, these relationships will dynamically change by growing and aging. For example, aesthetic disorders, due to ugly dentition that were not noticeable in early childhood, may become more conscious in adolescence, and may cause negative attitudes towards social life. In old age, decreases in masticatory and swallowing ability due to aging are said to impair nutritional status, which might adversely affect physical health. In addition, inability to eat may lead to losing opportunities to interact with others and sociality.

In this Special Issue on Oral Health and Connections to Mental and Physical Health, I hope to gather valuable evidence on various aspects of the oral–mental–physical connection. I hope that new insights will be provided, not just new knowledge adding to what we already know.

Dr. Yoko Hasegawa
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • oral function
  • mental health
  • physical health
  • mastication
  • swallow
  • lifetime change
  • cognitive function
  • nutrition
  • causal relationship

Published Papers (10 papers)

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11 pages, 1537 KiB  
Article
Effects of Interval Walking Training on Oral Health Status in Middle-Aged and Older Adults: A Case-Control Study
by Tasuku Yoshimoto, Yoko Hasegawa, Mayuka Furihata, Akihiro Yoshihara, Masako Shiramizu, Ma. Therese Sta. Maria, Shoko Hori, Mayuko Morikawa, Pinta Marito, Noboru Kaneko, Kaname Nohno, Hiroshi Nose, Shizue Masuki and Takahiro Ono
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(21), 14465; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph192114465 - 4 Nov 2022
Viewed by 1686
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of walking training “Interval Walking Training (IWT)” on oral health status. Participants were divided into two groups: an exercise intervention group and a non-intervention group (control). The intervention group consisted of 59 subjects [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of walking training “Interval Walking Training (IWT)” on oral health status. Participants were divided into two groups: an exercise intervention group and a non-intervention group (control). The intervention group consisted of 59 subjects (20 males, 39 females) aged 50 years or older who participated in the IWT program in Matsumoto from 2019 to April 2022. The control group consisted of 33 subjects (14 males and 19 females) aged 50 years or older who have visited Niigata University Medical and Dental Hospital and agreed to participate in the study. The intervention group underwent walking training (interval walking training) for at least 5–6 months. The walking training consisted of five sets of fast walking above 70% peak aerobic capacity for walking (VO2peak) for 3 min, followed by 3 min of slow walking at ~40% VO2 peak per day for more than four days/week. The oral health status was evaluated for the number of teeth, occlusal force, salivary occult blood, masticatory performance, and tongue pressure. A total of 57 participants were analyzed in the intervention group (18 males and 39 females, age: 66.7 ± 0.8 (mean ± S.E.) years) and 33 participants in the control group (14 males and 19 females, age: 74.5 ± 1.1 (mean ± S.E.) years). There were no significant differences in gender, salivary occult blood, tongue pressure, masticatory performance, or occlusal force between the two groups at the start of the intervention (p = 0.36, p = 0.48, p = 0.42, p = 0.58, and p = 0.08, respectively by unpaired t-test or χ2 test). On the other hand, there were significant differences in age and BMI, with a trend toward lower age and higher BMI in the intervention group (p < 0.001 and p < 0.001, respectively, by unpaired t-test). In terms of rate of change, the intervention group showed a significant increase in occlusal force (F = 4.5, p = 0.04, ANCOVA) and a significant decrease in BMI (F = 7.3, p = 0.009, ANCOVA). No significant differences were observed in the other measured items. It was found that walking training in both middle-aged and older people does not only affect the physical aspect of weight loss but may help maintain and improve the occlusal force. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Oral Health and Connections to Mental and Physical Health)
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10 pages, 2692 KiB  
Article
Continuous Oral Administration of Sonicated P. gingivalis Delays Rat Skeletal Muscle Healing Post-Treadmill Training
by Kairi Hayashi, Yasuo Takeuchi, Shintaro Shimizu, Gen Tanabe, Hiroshi Churei, Hiroaki Kobayashi and Toshiaki Ueno
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(20), 13046; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph192013046 - 11 Oct 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1592
Abstract
Background: A delay in muscle repair interferes with the effect of training or exercise; therefore, it is important to identify the factors that delay muscle repair. P. gingivalis, one of the most common periodontal disease pathogens, has the potential to inhibit muscle [...] Read more.
Background: A delay in muscle repair interferes with the effect of training or exercise; therefore, it is important to identify the factors that delay muscle repair. P. gingivalis, one of the most common periodontal disease pathogens, has the potential to inhibit muscle repair after training, as inferred from a previous study. To assess the expression of satellite cells in this in vivo study, we evaluated the relationship between P. gingivalis and muscle regeneration after training. Methods: A total of 20 male Wistar rats (eight weeks in age) were randomly divided into two groups: one orally administered sonicated P. gingivalis four times per week for six weeks (PG group) and one given no treatment (NT group). After four weeks of training using a treadmill, the gastrocnemius was evaluated using histology of the cross-sectional area (CSA) of myotubes and immunohistochemistry of the expression of skeletal muscle satellite cells. In addition, an endurance test was performed a day before euthanization. Results: The CSA and expression of Pax7+/MyoD− and Pax7+/MyoD+ cells were not significantly different between the groups. However, the expression of Pax7−/MyoD+ cells and running time until exhaustion were significantly lower in the PG group. Conclusions: Infection with P. gingivalis likely interferes with muscle repair after training. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Oral Health and Connections to Mental and Physical Health)
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10 pages, 547 KiB  
Article
Tooth Loss Related with Prevalence of Metabolic Syndrome in a General Urban Japanese Population: The Suita Study
by Takahiro Ono, Satoshi Kato, Yoshihiro Kokubo, Yoko Hasegawa, Takayuki Kosaka, Yoshinobu Maeda, Tomonori Okamura, Yoshihiro Miyamoto and Kazunori Ikebe
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(11), 6441; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19116441 - 25 May 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1961
Abstract
We examined whether the number of teeth could be a surrogate marker for metabolic syndrome (MetS) risk in cross-section. A total of 3771 individuals from the general urban Japanese population (1690 men, 2081 women; mean age 67.1 ± 11.0 years) participated in this [...] Read more.
We examined whether the number of teeth could be a surrogate marker for metabolic syndrome (MetS) risk in cross-section. A total of 3771 individuals from the general urban Japanese population (1690 men, 2081 women; mean age 67.1 ± 11.0 years) participated in this study. Participants were diagnosed with MetS with three or more components hypertension, hyperglycemia, lipid metabolism abnormality, and abnormal abdominal girth. Questionnaires were administered to determine the number of teeth, smoking status, drinking status, and past illnesses. To clarify the relationships between the number of teeth and the presence of MetS components, we divided subjects into two groups: those with less than 20 residual teeth and those with 20 or more, then statistical analyses (Mantel-Haenszel tests and logistic regression analysis) were performed. MetS were higher for those with ≤19 teeth than those with ≥20 teeth when examining all participants and women-only groups. Hyperglycemia, low HDL cholesterol, high triglycerides, and diagnosis with MetS were all significantly higher in the ≤19 teeth group for both sexes combined and for women. These results suggest that less than 20 teeth may be a surrogate marker for MetS risk, but further studies on gender differences and pathological background are needed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Oral Health and Connections to Mental and Physical Health)
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11 pages, 8770 KiB  
Article
Relationship between Food Crushing and Oral Function in Older Adults Requiring Nursing Home Care: A Pilot Study
by Kanako Yamawaki, Takahiro Mori, Sakiko Itaki, Azusa Haruta, Chiho Takeda, Aya Hiraoka, Mariko Maruyama, Mineka Yoshikawa, Mitsuyoshi Yoshida and Kazuhiro Tsuga
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(6), 3419; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19063419 - 14 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1921
Abstract
We investigated how jelly is crushed and examined the relationship between tongue pressure and tongue food crushing ability among older adults requiring nursing home care. Seventy-two participants were instructed to freely crush the test foods soft jelly (SJ) and hard jelly (HJ). We [...] Read more.
We investigated how jelly is crushed and examined the relationship between tongue pressure and tongue food crushing ability among older adults requiring nursing home care. Seventy-two participants were instructed to freely crush the test foods soft jelly (SJ) and hard jelly (HJ). We visually evaluated the crushability of the test food and identified the intraoral tissues (active sites) used to crush the test food. The active sites were consistent for all participants for both SJ and HJ, and they included the maxillary and mandibular teeth in 41 participants, teeth and residual ridges in 15 participants, maxillary and mandibular residual ridges in 10 participants, and tongue and palate in six participants. Two participants failed to crush the SJ; the active sites in both participants were the tongue and palate. No participant using the tongue and palate as active sites could crush the HJ. Furthermore, 64 participants could crush the SJ and 23 could crush the HJ using the tongue and palate. The cutoff value of the tongue pressure for crushability of the HJ was 22.0 kPa. Assessing tongue pressure and intraoral active sites involved in food crushing could help determine an appropriate diet for older adults requiring nursing home care. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Oral Health and Connections to Mental and Physical Health)
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11 pages, 1259 KiB  
Article
Effects of Oral Function Training and Oral Health Status on Physical Performance in Potentially Dependent Older Adults
by Masataka Sasajima, Akihiro Yoshihara and Ayuko Odajima
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(21), 11348; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182111348 - 28 Oct 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2547
Abstract
This study aimed to evaluate the effects of an oral function training program and indicators of oral health status on improvements in physical performance induced by physical function training in dependent older adults. The participants were 131 potentially dependent older adults (age: ≥65 [...] Read more.
This study aimed to evaluate the effects of an oral function training program and indicators of oral health status on improvements in physical performance induced by physical function training in dependent older adults. The participants were 131 potentially dependent older adults (age: ≥65 years) who were randomly divided into two groups: an oral intervention and a control group. All participants underwent physical function training, but only the intervention group took part in the oral function training program. In total, 106 participants completed all of the survey components (60 and 46 participants from the intervention and control groups, respectively). The measures of physical fitness examined included the one-leg standing time with eyes open (OLST) and the timed up and go test (TUG). Logistic regression analyses were carried out to determine the effects of the oral function intervention and health status on physical fitness. The results revealed that the oral function intervention significantly improved OLST and TUG times. These findings suggest that evaluations of oral health status and interventions aimed at activating oral functions are associated with improvements in physical fitness among potentially dependent older adults. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Oral Health and Connections to Mental and Physical Health)
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10 pages, 511 KiB  
Article
Association between Weight Loss and Food Form in Older Individuals Residing in Long-Term Care Facilities: 1-Year Multicenter Longitudinal Study
by Akemi Endo, Yutaka Watanabe, Takae Matsushita, Kazutaka Okada, Yuki Ohara, Masanori Iwasaki, Kayoko Ito, Junko Nakajima, Yasuyuki Iwasa, Masataka Itoda, Rikimaru Sasaki, Yasuhiro Nishi, Junichi Furuya, Yoshihiko Watanabe, George Umemoto, Masako Kishima, Hirohiko Hirano, Yuji Sato, Mitsuyoshi Yoshida and Yutaka Yamazaki
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(20), 10776; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182010776 - 14 Oct 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2456
Abstract
Changing the food form for older adults requiring nursing care from a regular to dysphagia diet is thought to impact their nutritional status. We assessed the association between changes in food form and weight loss over 1 year in older adults. Older adults [...] Read more.
Changing the food form for older adults requiring nursing care from a regular to dysphagia diet is thought to impact their nutritional status. We assessed the association between changes in food form and weight loss over 1 year in older adults. Older adults residing in long-term care facilities in Japan (n = 455) who participated in the baseline (2018) and follow-up (2019) surveys were divided into two groups (regular diet, n = 284; dysphagia diet, n = 171). The regular diet group was further divided into the weight loss (n = 80; weight loss ≥5% over 1 year) and weight maintenance (n = 204; weight loss <5%) groups. After 1 year, the Barthel Index significantly decreased, and the proportion of participants who switched from a regular diet to a dysphagia diet significantly increased in the weight loss group than in the weight maintenance group. Multivariate logistic regression analysis found that Barthel index variation (odds ratio (OR): 0.97, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.94‒0.99), change from a regular diet to a dysphagia diet (OR: 4.41, 95% CI: 1.87‒10.41), and body weight at baseline (OR = 1.06, 95% CI: 1.01‒1.11) were significantly associated with weight loss. Our results suggest that maintaining the food form inhibits weight loss and improves health outcomes in older adults. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Oral Health and Connections to Mental and Physical Health)
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14 pages, 1086 KiB  
Article
Psychometric Properties of the Schizophrenia Oral Health Profile: Preliminary Results
by Frédéric Denis, Ines Rouached, Francesca Siu-Paredes, Alexis Delpierre, Gilles Amador, Wissam El-Hage and Nathalie Rude
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9090; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18179090 - 28 Aug 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2030
Abstract
The Schizophrenia Oral Health Profile questionnaire was developed to assess the oral health-related quality of life among individuals with schizophrenia based on their perceptions rather than from caregivers. A 5-point Likert scale was used to self-report on 42 items. In the present study, [...] Read more.
The Schizophrenia Oral Health Profile questionnaire was developed to assess the oral health-related quality of life among individuals with schizophrenia based on their perceptions rather than from caregivers. A 5-point Likert scale was used to self-report on 42 items. In the present study, different analyses were conducted to determine the dimensional structure of the final scale: (1) inter-item correlation analysis and Cronbach’s α coefficient, (2) Rasch model analysis, (3) exploratory factor analysis and (4) confirmatory factor analysis. The final version of the Schizophrenia Oral Health Profile questionnaire consisted of 20 items and an internal structure composed of three dimensions: (1) emotions related to oral health, (2) oral pain and discomfort and (3) self-image, others’ views and the need for care. We showed that the difficulty and discrimination indices of each of the 20 selected items were acceptable according to the Rasch model, as well as their inter-item and inter-score correlations (α = 0.875). The psychometric study of the Schizophrenia Oral Health Profile questionnaire is still in progress to investigate reproducibility, sensitivity to change and external structure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Oral Health and Connections to Mental and Physical Health)
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12 pages, 600 KiB  
Article
Relationship between Oral Hypofunction and Sarcopenia in Community-Dwelling Older Adults: The Otassha Study
by Yoshihiro Kugimiya, Masanori Iwasaki, Yuki Ohara, Keiko Motokawa, Ayako Edahiro, Maki Shirobe, Yutaka Watanabe, Shuichi Obuchi, Hisashi Kawai, Yoshinori Fujiwara, Kazushige Ihara, Hunkyung Kim, Takayuki Ueda and Hirohiko Hirano
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(12), 6666; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18126666 - 21 Jun 2021
Cited by 30 | Viewed by 3861
Abstract
Oral hypofunction, resulting from a combined decrease in multiple oral functions, may affect systemic-condition deterioration; however, few studies have examined the association between oral hypofunction and general health among older adults. In this cross-sectional study, we examined the relationship between oral hypofunction and [...] Read more.
Oral hypofunction, resulting from a combined decrease in multiple oral functions, may affect systemic-condition deterioration; however, few studies have examined the association between oral hypofunction and general health among older adults. In this cross-sectional study, we examined the relationship between oral hypofunction and sarcopenia in community-dwelling older adults. We included 878 adults (268 men and 610 women, mean age 76.5 ± 8.3 years). Tongue coating index, oral moisture, occlusal force, oral diadochokinesis (/pa/,/ta/,/ka/), tongue pressure, mas-ticatory function, and swallowing function were evaluated as indicators of oral hypofunction. Grip strength, gait speed, and skeletal muscle mass index were measured as diagnostic sarcopenia parameters. The association between oral hypofunction and sarcopenia was examined via logistic regression using sarcopenia as the dependent variable. Oral hypofunction prevalence was 50.5% overall, 40.3% in men, and 54.9% in women. The prevalence of sarcopenia was 18.6% overall, 9.7% in men, and 22.5% in women. A logistic regression showed oral hypofunction, age, body mass index, higher-level functional capacity, and serum albumin level were significantly associated with sarcopenia. Sarcopenia occurred at an increased frequency in patients diagnosed with oral hypofunction (odds ratio: 1.59, 95% confidence interval: 1.02–2.47); accordingly, oral hypofunction appears to be significantly associated with sarcopenia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Oral Health and Connections to Mental and Physical Health)
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8 pages, 448 KiB  
Article
Self-Rated Oral Health and Associated Factors among an Adult Population in Rural India—An Epidemiological Study
by Meghashyam Bhat, Sreevidya Bhat, Kaye Frances Roberts-Thomson and Loc Giang Do
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(12), 6414; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18126414 - 13 Jun 2021
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 2578
Abstract
Background: To determine the perception of oral health status and its associated factors among adults living in rural areas in Karnataka state, India. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among adults in the age group of 35–54 years old residing in villages in [...] Read more.
Background: To determine the perception of oral health status and its associated factors among adults living in rural areas in Karnataka state, India. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among adults in the age group of 35–54 years old residing in villages in a southern state in India. The main outcome measure was poor self-rated oral health (SROH) among adults in rural India. Results: About 873 adults participated in the study. The prevalence of poor SROH was 15.2%. Adults of age 40–44 years, females, those in lower socioeconomic conditions, and those with high caries experience (DMFT ≥ 4) and periodontal disease were associated with poor SROH. Those who had visited a dentist in the previous one year were 1.9 times more likely to report poor oral health. Conclusions: Nearly 15% of rural people reported poor oral health. Socioeconomic conditions, sex, age, smoking, and dental visiting were associated with poor SROH. People’s perception of poor oral health was associated with severe periodontitis and DMFT ≥ 4. A dose–response relationship was observed between experience with dental caries and poor SROH. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Oral Health and Connections to Mental and Physical Health)

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18 pages, 862 KiB  
Protocol
Protocol for a Case Control Study to Evaluate Oral Health as a Biomarker of Child Exposure to Adverse Psychosocial Experiences
by Anna Durbin, Bennett T. Amaechi, Stephen Abrams, Andreas Mandelis, Sara Werb, Benjamin Roebuck, Janet Durbin, Ri Wang, Maryam Daneshvarfard, Konesh Sivagurunathan and Laurent Bozec
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(6), 3403; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19063403 - 14 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3387
Abstract
Background: The early identification of children who have experienced adversity is critical for the timely delivery of interventions to improve coping and reduce negative consequences. Self-report is the usual practice for identifying children with exposure to adversity. However, physiological characteristics that signal the [...] Read more.
Background: The early identification of children who have experienced adversity is critical for the timely delivery of interventions to improve coping and reduce negative consequences. Self-report is the usual practice for identifying children with exposure to adversity. However, physiological characteristics that signal the presence of disease or other exposures may provide a more objective identification strategy. This protocol describes a case–control study that assesses whether exposure to adversity is more common in children with tooth enamel anomalies compared to children without such anomalies. Methods: For 150 mother–child pairs from a pediatric dental clinic in Toronto, Canada, maternal interviews will assess the child’s adverse and resilience-building experiences. Per child, one (exfoliated or extracted) tooth will be assessed for suspected enamel anomalies. If anomalies are present, the child is a case, and if absent, the child is a control. Tooth assessment modalities will include usual practice for dental exams (visual assessment) and modalities with greater sensitivity to identify anomalies. Conclusion: If structural changes in children’s teeth are associated with exposure to adversity, routine dental exams could provide an opportunity to screen children for experiences of adversity. Affected children could be referred for follow-up. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Oral Health and Connections to Mental and Physical Health)
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