23% of dental patients start losing teeth by age 45: survey
About three years ago, Vile Parle resident Alka Gupta, 58, (name changed) could not face her guests during her son’s marriage. She had lost many of her teeth and was told that she could soon lose all of them.mumbai Updated: Jul 25, 2012 02:01 IST
About three years ago, Vile Parle resident Alka Gupta, 58, (name changed) could not face her guests during her son’s marriage. She had lost many of her teeth and was told that she could soon lose all of them.
“I had sunken cheeks. I was not able to eat any food, as I could not chew properly. I wanted to correct this problem,” said Gupta.
Gupta is among the growing number of patients in India who suffer from either partial or complete edentulism, in which a person loses all their teeth.
Edentulism can be caused by periodontal diseases, where the bone surrounding teeth, and providing support to them, may weaken, loosening the teeth and causing them to fall off.
Last month, a multinational company that manufactures medical implants conducted a surgery of 200 patients who had suffered partial or complete edentulism in Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru, Kolkata, and Hyderabad.
The survey showed that about 23% of these patients started losing their teeth between the ages of 45 and 50 years. “This is caused by a combination of poor oral hygiene, chewing tobacco and eating junk food such as sweets. Such foods were not easily affordable earlier,” said Dr Suchetan Pradhan, consultant implantologist, who runs a dental clinic in Juhu. Gupta got 24 implants at Dr Pradhan’s clinic, each costing about Rs3,000.
Dentists said about 90% of Indians suffer from gum disease, or periodontitis, where gums and bones supporting the teeth are infected. “In the 80s, I hardly got any patients suffering from caries or cavities. But we now see a lot of patients suffering from periodontitis,” said Dr HL Dhusia, head of dentistry, Sion hospital.
Edentulism is a serious handicap, dentists said. While about 50% of the patients said they were unable to speak properly, about 40% of these patients said they were unable to chew food properly.