Send to

Choose Destination
Gerontology. 1999;45(2):110-4.

Relationship between oral alveolar bone loss and aging among African-American and Caucasian individuals.

Author information

Department of Research, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, Miss. 39216-4505, USA.



The periodontal attachment apparatus consists of the periodontal ligament, alveolar bone, cementum and supra-crestal connective tissue. They are interdependent and provide protection and support to the dentition. It is theorized that the integrity of the periodontal apparatus can be maintained throughout life by exercising comprehensive oral hygiene practices and routine dental care. Additionally, it appears to be unaffected by aging. As a consequence, the investigators performed a study to determine the effects of chronological aging on alveolar bone loss.


The present study was conducted to determine the relationship between oral alveolar bone loss, oral hygiene, and aging among African-American and Caucasian populations.


The population consisted of 229 individuals. There were 131 men and 98 women. With respect to race there were 89 African-Americans and 140 Caucasians. Oral examinations, oral hygiene and missing teeth determinations and bitewing radiographs were performed on all the individuals. Radiographs were digitized and measurements were made from the cementum/enamel junction to the alveolar bone crest. Measurements were made for both the maxillary and mandibular jaws.


The results of the study showed a significant multiple linear regression model relationship between oral bone loss and aging. Oral hygiene was a factor, but contributed only slightly to the overall model. Race, gender and the number of missing teeth were not significant variables in the overall model.


The results of this study suggest age-related alveolar bone loss.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for S. Karger AG, Basel, Switzerland
Loading ...
Support Center