Study Finds Most People with Substance Abuse Problems Claim Poor Oral Health

The majority of people with substance dependence issues say they have poor oral health, according to a study from Boston University. Opioid use in particular was significantly related to dental problems.

The researchers studied the effects of alcohol, stimulants, opioids and marijuana on oral health among 563 people who were substance-dependent. They were asked to rate their oral health on a five-point scale ranging from poor to excellent.

In the Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, the researchers report that 60 percent of people in the study reported fair or poor oral health. Opioid use was significantly related to a worse overall oral health rating compared with the previous year. Researcher Meredith D’Amore, MPH, said the results indicate that providers should be aware of potential oral health issues in people with substance dependence.

2 Responses to Study Finds Most People with Substance Abuse Problems Claim Poor Oral Health

  1. william hamel | February 26, 2014 at 12:10 pm

    Opioid use was significantly related to a worse overall oral health rating compared with the previous year.

  2. Some drugs and alcohol are noted to be a root cause of oral cavities and this combined with poor dental hygiene habits can mean that the person may suffer severe oral health problems. Most people who have substance abuse problem and alcohol addicts don’t have a proper level of oral hygiene, and when they feel pain in their teeth they would most likely just ignore it. Personal dental care habits and access to professional dental care are important factors in reducing oral diseases.

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