Effect of Social Class on the Prevalence and Severity of Periodontal Disease
Objectives: This study is aimed at assessing the influence of socio-economic status on the severity of periodontal disease.
Materials and Methods: A one year retrospective study of 298 patients who
had been treated at the periodontics clinic of the University College Hospital, Ibadan was conducted. Case file records were reviewed and information on patients’ bio-data, occupation and periodontal health status as indicated by the plaque and gingival indices were retrieved. The patients were categorized into various socio-economic classes, utilizing the occupational strata devised by Famuyiwa et al. The association between periodontal health and socio-economic classes of patients was statistically assessed using Chi-square tests (P<0.05).
Results: Most of the patients were civil servants accounting for 86 (29.4%)
of the group, 79(26.6%) were students, 63 (21.5%) were professionals and 55(19.1%) were classified as unskilled. The semi-skilled group was least represented constituting 10 (3.4%) of the entire patient population. Chisquare analysis revealed no significant association between socio-economic class and periodontal health status.
Conclusion: The findings of this study suggest that the severity of periodontal disease does not have a significant association with the socioeconomic status of patients. We identified some limitations of the study and suggest further investigation on this subject.
Key words: Prevalence; severity; periodontal disease; socio-economic status
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