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The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHNES) reported the most recent statistics on the prevalence of adult periodontal disease in the United States from 2009-2014. Data were collected from over 10,000 U.S. adults over the age of 30. The mean age was 50.8 years, with a female: male ratio of 51:49% and a mean of 24 teeth present per subject. Standard periodontal examinations were conducted using the American Academy of Periodontology format.

Periodontal DiseaseThe following findings are some of the highlights:

  • Approximately 42% of the dentate American adults 30 years and over have periodontal disease.
  • 7.8% have severe periodontal disease.
  • Severe periodontal disease was most prevalent in the age group of 65 and older.
  • Periodontal disease was most prevalent among the Mexican-American, followed by non-Hispanic blacks
  • The prevalence of periodontal disease increased with increasing poverty level.
  • Periodontal disease is more prevalent among current smokers, people who did not regularly floss, and those that have not visited the dentist within the past 6 months
  • Periodontal disease significantly co-occurred with diabetes and increasing number of missing teeth.

In conclusion, periodontal disease is highly prevalent and a major health problem among U.S. adults.  This NHNES study provides the most comprehensive and up-to-date estimates of the incidence of periodontal disease in the adult U.S. population. This information should be useful in the awareness, prevention, treatment, and maintenance of periodontal disease.

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