Roughly 65 million US adults 30+ years old, or the entire population of Australia, Sri Lanka, and Guatemala combined, have periodontitis.
Periodontitis consists of inflammation of the tissue around the teeth, often causing shrinkage of the gums and loosening of the teeth. It has been linked to heart disease, diabetes, and pancreatic cancer.
The study found that Periodontitis prevalence was positively associated with increasing age and was higher among males. Additionally, periodontititis was highest among Hispanics (63.5%) and African Americans (59.1%), followed by Asian Americans (50%). Prevalence was lowest among non-Hispanic whites (40.8%).
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Not surprisingly, periodontitis prevalence increased with increasing poverty levels and lower education. The study was done through a government survey conducted by the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES).
Source: “Study shows nearly one-half of US adults have periodontitis. (2015, May 1). The Journal of the American Dental Association, 293-293.”