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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Women as dental patients: are there any gender differences?

There is an increasing awareness that gender differences affect both health and disease. This review looks at gender differences as they pertain to the mouth. Not only does pregnancy, the menstrual cycle and the menopause affect the oral tissues but there are also gender differences in regard to patterns of dental disease as women access dental care differently and react to health promotion in a more positive manner. Women live longer and are therefore more likely to be on drugs which complicate treatment. Care must also be taken in prescribing drugs during pregnancy and lactation and attention must be paid to the interaction of drugs with oral contraceptives. Certain systemic diseases such as Sjögrens syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis and anorexia nervosa which have specific oral manifestations are especially common in women. Although oral cancer is mainly a problem among men the rise in smoking among young women poses a problem for the future. HIV/AIDS can be diagnosed on the basis of oral lesions and this may be of great importance in the event of a pregnancy. Although facial pain and facial arthromyalgia (temporomandibular joint dysfunction) pain are common in the population, women come forward for treatment much more frequently. Burning syndrome is especially common among post menopausal women and urgently needs more research.[1]


  1. Women as dental patients: are there any gender differences? Zakrzewska, J.M. International dental journal. (1996) [Pubmed]
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