Periodontal disease and dental caries from Krapina neanderthal to contemporery man – skeletal studies
Keywords:Periodontium, Alveolar resorption, Neanderthal, TCHindex, Dental caries
AbstractObjective. The aim of this study was the quantification of alveolarbone resorption as well as the number and percentage of teeth withdental caries. Materials and Methods. Four samples of jaws and singleteeth were studied from four time periods, i.e. from the KrapinaNeanderthals (KN) who reportedly lived over 130,000 years ago, andgroups of humans from the 1st, 10th and 20th centuries. Resorption ofthe alveolar bone of the jaws was quantified by the tooth-cervicalheight(TCH) index. Diagnosis of dental caries was made by inspectionand with a dental probe. TCH-index was calculated for a totalof 1097 teeth from 135 jaws. Decay was calculated for a total of 3579teeth. Results. Resorptive changes of the alveolar bone in KN and 1stcentury man were more pronounced on the vestibular surface thaninterdentally (p<0.05), while no significant difference could be confirmedfor 10th and 20th century man (p=0.1). The number (percentage)of decayed teeth was 0 (0%, n=281 teeth) in KN, 15 (1.7%; n=860teeth) in 1st century, 24 (3.4%; n=697 teeth) in 10th century, and 207(11.9%, n=1741 teeth) in 20th century. Conclusion. On the basis of ourresults it may be postulated that in contemporary man in relation toKN, the accumulation of plaque pathogens in the interdental space issubstantially greater than on the vestibular side. These findings havepractical, educational and preventive value for oral hygiene improvement, especially of the interdental space, which should help decreasethe prevalence of periodontal disease and dental caries, and improveoral as well as general health.
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