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Publication 47 "Oral health"

Published in July 2009 as part of the series of Federal Health Reporting ("Gesundheitsberichterstattung des Bundes")

Booklet 47: Oral health. Quelle: © RKI Source: © Robert Koch-Institut

ISBN 978-3-89606-200-0
ISSN 1437-5478
German version only

Oral health – Booklet 47 (PDF, 1 MB, File does not meet accessibility standards.)

Good oral health is an important prerequisite for good health and subjective well-being. It enables people to eat without problems and to smile and communicate with confidence. Oral health has many and varied effects on the entire organism; it is also influenced by it.

Diseases of the mouth and teeth are widespread in Germany: fewer than 1% of all adults have a no tooth decay (caries) at all. The prevalence of periodontal diseases has been stagnating at a high level in recent years. In 2007 over 7% of total medical payments for patients by the statutory health insurance (over €10 billion) went on dental treatment and dentures. The high prevalence of oral and dental diseases is closely linked to people's lifestyle, especially to sugar, alcohol and tobacco consumption. Yet there is considerable preventive potential in this field, and many cheap and effective precautionary measures are available. Significant improvements in dental health have been achieved among children and adolescents in recent years, partially through the widespread use of fluorides in group and individual prophylaxis. However, the incidence of caries among children and adolescents in Germany has become polarized, i.e. the most cavities are concentrated among a small subgroup of patients. A decline in caries incidence and tooth loss among adults and seniors was recorded in 2005 for the first time. Current studies show that three quarters of all Germans have good oral-hygiene behaviour and go for regular dental check-ups.

On the basis of current and representative data, this Federal Health Reporting booklet provides an overview of the various diseases and disorders of oral health and their prevalence. It discusses risk factors and the causes and consequences of the various diseases. This overview of the German population's oral health is rounded off by information on preventive and therapeutic measures, their cost, and the extent to which they are used by the population.

Date: 01.07.2009