Tooth Loss in Older Adults Is Associated With Malnourishment
Tooth loss is associated with a higher risk of malnourishment in older adults, according to new data presented at the Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo 2020.
“Older adults are at risk for tooth loss and compromised nutrition status,” the researchers wrote. “Our objective was to conduct a systematic review and meta-analysis of tooth loss and nutrition status in adults [aged 60 years or older].”
To conduct their study, the researchers identified relevant studies in English published between 2008 and 2019 in 5 online databases. Data on study and participant characteristics, as well as dentition and nutrition status, were used in the analysis.
Overall, 6 meta-analyses were included for review.
Findings showed that adults aged 60 years or older who do not have teeth or lack functional dentition are 21% more likely to be malnourished or be at risk for malnutrition than their counterparts with teeth or functional dentition.
One study limitation cited by the researchers, though, was how the studies defined and measured tooth loss and nutritional status.
“Findings suggest that older adults with tooth loss are at greater risk of malnutrition than those with functionally adequate dentition,” the researchers concluded. “Further research is needed using consistent approaches to assess tooth loss and nutrition status in the [United States]. These results support the need for dietitians to evaluate dentition status during nutrition assessment and care planning for older adults.”
Goldstein SB. Exploring the associations between tooth loss and nutrition status in adults 60 years and older: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Paper presented at: Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo 2020; October 17-20, 2020; Virtual. https://www.eventscribe.com/2020/FNCE2020/fsPopup.asp?efp=TENUR0JSUVgxMDc3MQ%20&PosterID=287357%20&rnd=0.9285433&mode=posterinfo