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J Adolesc Health. 2013 May;52(5):641-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2012.11.002. Epub 2013 Jan 23.

The effect of tobacco and marijuana use on dental health status in Nevada adolescents: a trend analysis.

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  • 1University of Nevada, Las Vegas, School of Dental Medicine, Las Vegas, NV 89106, USA. mditmyer1@hotmail.com

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death worldwide. If current trends persist, tobacco will kill more than 8 million people worldwide by 2030 and 1 billion by the end of the century. The purpose of this study was to determine trends in tobacco/marijuana use in Nevada adolescents and their effect on dental health status. Relative comparative data were compared with nationally reported data.

METHODS:

Retrospective data in this cohort study was from an ongoing statewide, school-based, dental health screening initiative that was conducted across 8 years (2002-2010) in public/private middle/high schools in Nevada. A total of 66,941 dental health screenings of adolescents between ages 13-18 were conducted. Self-reported data were collected on tobacco/marijuana use. Descriptive statistics and trends were reported. Means (SE) were computed for caries prevalence and severity. Effect size was reported on dental caries and use of tobacco/marijuana.

RESULTS:

Overall, percentage prevalence of tobacco use was approximately the same as the national average; however, there were significantly higher rates of marijuana use (12.0% vs. 3.3%). Prevalence and severity of dental caries was significantly higher in those who used tobacco/marijuana than those who did not across all variables and across all 8 years controlling for gender, race/ethnicity, where they lived, and exposure to secondhand smoke.

CONCLUSIONS:

Tobacco use negatively affected dental health status with marijuana having the largest negative effect. The findings from this study identified the need for tobacco/marijuana prevention services targeting adolescents residing in the geographic areas most at risk.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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