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Few publications report on the relationship between salutogenesis, as measured by the concept of sense of coherence, and oral health-related quality of life. Even less information is to be found when the behavioural aspect of dental anxiety is added. The aim of the present study was to evaluate how oral health-related quality of life is related to sense of coherence and dental anxiety.
The study had a cross-sectional design and included 500 randomly selected women in Gothenburg, Sweden, 38 and 50years of age, from health examinations in 2004–05. The survey included questionnaires covering global questions concerning socio-economic status, oral health/function and dental care behaviour, and tests of oral health-related quality of life, sense of coherence, and dental anxiety.
High dental anxiety and low sense of coherence predicted low oral health-related quality of life. In addition, socioeconomic status as measured by income, perceived oral functional status as captured by chewing ability and self-reported susceptibility to periodontal disease were also important predictors of oral health-related quality of life.
Dental anxiety and sense of coherence had an inverse relationship with regard to oral health-related quality of life. These associations were stronger than other risk factors for low oral health-related quality of life.