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Childhood socioeconomic conditions and teeth in older adulthood: evidence from SHARE wave 5

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Jing Shen, Emeritus Professor Jimmy Steele CBE, Professor John WildmanORCiD



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Wiley , 2018.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


Objectives: Dental diseases are the most common chronic diseases worldwide. Healthy teeth arevital for quality of life, particularly diet and nutrition. However, little information exists toinform health policy makers about potentially long-lasting influences of early life conditions.The purpose of this study was to investigate the relation between early life socioeconomicconditions and number of natural teeth at age 50 and above. Methods: Analyses were conductedon cross-sectional data from the Survey of Health, Ageing, and Retirement in Europe (SHAREwave 5), which includes information on 60,674 respondents aged 50 years or older from 14European countries and Israel. Using SHARE life history information, a series of regressionmodels (OLS, Tobit) were estimated to analyse the relationship between socioeconomicconditions in earlier life and the number of teeth at age 50+. Results: Childhood socioeconomicbackground was associated with the number of natural teeth at age 50 and above, even aftercontrolling for current determinants of oral health. Respondents who had had more than 25books in their childhood household had a mean 1.4 (95% CI: 1.2-1.5) more teeth thanrespondents with fewer books. Respondents who reported poor financial conditions duringchildhood had a mean 0.6 (95% CI: 0.3-0.9) fewer teeth than respondents who reported betterfinancial conditions in childhood. Conclusion: These findings substantiate the associationbetween socioeconomic conditions in the early years of life and tooth retention to olderadulthood and highlight the long-lasting relation between childhood living conditions and oralhealth through the lifecourse.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Listl S, Broadbent J, Thomson MT, Stock C, Shen J, Steele J, Wildman J, Heilmann A, Watt RG, Tsakos G, Peres MA, van der Heijden G, Jurges H

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology

Year: 2018

Volume: 46

Issue: 1

Pages: 78-87

Print publication date: 01/02/2018

Online publication date: 19/09/2017

Acceptance date: 02/08/2017

Date deposited: 01/09/2017

ISSN (electronic): 1600-0528

Publisher: Wiley


DOI: 10.1111/cdoe.12332


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Funder referenceFunder name
IAG BSR06-11
OGHA 04-064
P01 AG08291
P01 AG005842
P30 AG12815
R21 AG025169
U01 AG09740-13S2