Prof Wolfgang Ahrens, deputy director of BIPS (Bremen Institute for Prevention Research and Social Medicine), described the study findings as “really important”.
“Up until now, it was not really known if these dental risk factors were independent of the well known risks for mouth and throat cancers – smoking, alcohol and low socio-economic status,” he said.
The definition of poor oral health included people who had complete or part dentures and people with persistently bleeding gums.
Dr David Conway, clinical senior lecturer at Glasgow University Dental School, said: “People should not assume that if they wear dentures and have none of their own teeth left, they have no need to see a dentist. On the contrary, even if you have got dentures, you should make sure you go for regular check-ups.”
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