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Community Dent Oral Epidemiol. 1987 Jun;15(3):169-72.

Prevalence of oral and facial pain and discomfort: preliminary results of a mail survey.


A mail survey was undertaken to estimate the prevalence of oral and facial pain and discomfort in the City of Toronto. Self-complete questionnaires were sent to a random sample of 1014 persons drawn from the voter's list. Replies were received from 72% of those eligible. Overall, 53% of respondents had experienced some pain or discomfort in the 4 wk prior to the completion of the questionnaire. The most common kinds of pain and discomfort reported were pain in the teeth with hot or cold fluids (28.8%), sore and bleeding gums (26.3%) and toothache (14.1%). Pain in jaws, face and oral mucosa was reported by less than 10% of the subjects. While much of the pain experienced by the respondents was classified as mild, half (50.1%) said that it was moderately severe or severe. Only 40% of those reporting pain had sought the advice of a dentist or doctor. Sex differences in the reporting of pain were small and statistically non-significant, although age differences were marked and significant. The younger age groups were more likely to report both pain and discomfort than the older age groups. The survey has revealed a substantial amount of oral and facial pain in the community, much of which is not subject to professional attention.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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