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Adult Gum Disease

Periodontal Disease in Adults (Age 20 to 64)

Overall, the prevalence of periodontal (gum) disease in adults has decreased from the early 1970s until the latest (1999-2004) National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. In spite of this improvement, significant disparities remain in some population groups.

The research definitions of periodontal disease are not necessarily the same as the common definition of gum disease, which may include both gingivitis (inflammation of the gums without any loss of bone and tissue) and periodontitis (as defined below):

For the purposes of epidemiological research, periodontal disease is defined very specifically. For a person to have periodontal disease, he or she must have at least one periodontal site with 3 millimeters or more of attachment loss and 4 millimeters or more of pocket depth. Moderate periodontal disease is defined as having at least two teeth with interproximal attachment loss of 4 millimeters or more OR at least two teeth with 5 millimeters or more of pocket depth at interproximal sites. Severe periodontal disease is defined as having at least two teeth with interproximal attachment loss of 6 millimeters or more AND at least one tooth with 5 millimeters or more of pocket depth at interproximal sites.

Prevalence of Periodontal Disease

  • 8.52% of adults age 20 to 64 have periodontal disease.

  • Older adults, Black and Hispanic adults, current smokers, and those with lower incomes and less education are more likely to have periodontal disease.

Prevalence of Severe Periodontal disease

  • 5.08% of adults 20 to 64 have moderate or severe periodontal disease.

  • Older adults, Black and Hispanic adults, current smokers, and those with lower incomes and less education are more likely to have moderate/severe periodontal disease.

Source: NIDCR

 

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