Revista de Saúde Pública
versão impressa ISSN 0034-8910
MARTINS, Andréa Maria Eleutério de Barros Lima; BARRETO, Sandhi Maria e PORDEUS, Isabela Almeida. Factors associated to self perceived need of dental care among Brazilian elderly. Rev. Saúde Pública [online]. 2008, vol.42, n.3, pp. 487-496. ISSN 0034-8910. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0034-89102008000300014.
OBJECTIVE: To analyze factors associated with the self-perceived need for dental treatment among elderly people. METHODS: A total of 5,326 individuals who were included in a sample of Brazilian elderly people aged 65-74 years in a home survey on oral health conducted by the Brazilian Ministry of Health in 2002/2003 were investigated. The analysis was based on the model of Gift, Atchison & Drury, and Poisson regression for analysis of surveys with complex samples was used. RESULTS: Out of the whole sample, 2,928 (55%) of the elderly people said they needed dental treatment. This need was perceived less frequently among those aged 70 years or over (PR=0.94; 95% CI: 0.89;0.99), those who had not received information on how to avoid oral problems (PR=0.89; 95% CI: 0.83;0.95) and those who were edentate (PR=0.68; 95% CI: 0.62;0.74). The perceived need was greater among those who self;rated their oral health as regular (PR=1.31; 95% CI: 1.21;1.41) or poor/very poor (PR=1.29; 95% CI: 1.19;1.41), their appearance as regular (PR=1.23; 95% CI: 1.15;1.32) or poor/very poor (PR=1.28; 95% CI: 1.18;1.39) and their chewing as regular (PR=1.08; 95% CI: 1.01;1.15) or poor/very poor (PR=1.13; 95% CI: 1.05;1.21). It was also greater among those who reported pain in their teeth or gums over the six months prior to the survey (PR=1.27; 95% CI: 1.18;1.36) and among those who needed a prosthesis in one arch (PR=1.29; 95% CI: 1.19;1.39) or both (PR=1.27; 95% CI: 1.16;1.40). CONCLUSIONS: Information, oral health conditions and subjective questions were associated with self-perceived need for dental treatment. The results reinforce the need to capacitate individuals to carry out oral self-examination and identify non-painful signs and symptoms of mucosal lesions, caries and periodontal disease at an early stage.
Palavras-chave : Aged; Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice; Dental Care for Aged; Dental Health Surveys; Health Education, Dental.