Oral health

Oral health

LASA filenames:
LASAFF17 (as part of the lifestyle study)

Contact: Marjolein Visser


Oral health for older people was defined as a priority action area in the World Health Organization Global Oral Health Programme (1) as good oral health is considered as an important contributor for healthy life years in an aging population whereas poor oral health is related to diseases, impaired communication, and poor quality of life (2-5). Moreover, oral health status influences dietary intake as mastication and insalivation of the food are important steps in the processes of eating and digesting (6). Poor oral health can consequently result in an unbalanced diet not meeting the energy and nutrient requirements (6,7) and is therefore a potential risk factor for malnutrition (8,9).

Oral health data within LASA

Information on oral health status was obtained by a questionnaire which was developed in cooperation with experts on oral health from the Academic Centrum Tandheelkunde Amsterdam (ACTA) and the Netherlands Organisation for applied scientific research (TNO). The questionnaire consists of 22 questions with predefined answer categories and addresses different aspects of oral health: self-rated oral health (1 question), oral hygiene (6 questions), number of teeth (2 questions), wearing dentures (3 questions) and oral problems (10 questions). The questionnaire as a whole wasn’t applied before in other studies.


LASAFF17 (in: LASA Lifestyle Study 2007, in Dutch);
LASAI126 / LASAJ126 / LASAK126 (self-administered questionnaire, in Dutch)

Variable information

LASAI126 / LASAJ126 / LASAK126

Availability of information per wave


Oral health


¹ More information about the LASA data collection waves is available here.

* 2B=baseline second cohort;
3B=baseline third cohort;
MB=migrants: baseline first cohort

Sa=data collected in self-administered questionnaire

† This oral health questionnaire was incorporated in the self-administered questionnaire of the Lifestyle study (2007, filename LASAFF17) and in the self-adminstered questionnaire of the regular LASA I examination wave (2015-16, filename LASAI126).

Previous use in LASA

Toothache while chewing was found to be a determinant of incident malnutrition in community-dwelling older adults, and there are indications that poor oral health and xerostomia in combination with having no teeth may play a role in developing malnutrition. However, these outlined tendencies need to be proven in further studies.

  • Kiesswetter, E., Hengeveld, L.M., Keijser, B.J.F., Volkert, D., Visser, M. (2019) Oral health determinants of incident malnutrition in community-dwelling older adults. Journal of Dentistry, 85, 73-80


  1. Petersen PE: The World Oral Health Report 2003: continuous improvement of oral health in the 21st century–the approach of the WHO Global Oral Health Programme. Community dentistry and oral epidemiology 2003; 31 Suppl 1: 3-23.
  2. Petersen PE, Kandelman D, Arpin S et al: Global oral health of older people – call for public health action. Community Dent Health 2010; 27: 257-267.
  3. Visscher CM, Lobbezoo F, Schuller AA. Dental status and oral health-related quality of life. A population-based study. J Oral Rehabil. 2014 Jun;41(6):416-22.
  4. Haag DG, Peres KG, Balasubramanian M, Brennan DS. Oral Conditions and Health-Related Quality of Life: A Systematic Review. J Dent Res 2017; 96:864-874.
  5. Scannapieco FA, Cantos A. Oral inflammation and infection, and chronic medical diseases: implications for the elderly. Periodontol 2000. 2016; 72:153-75.
  6. Walls AW, Steele JG. The relationship between oral health and nutrition in older people. Mech Ageing Dev 2004; 125:853-857.
  7. Tada A, Miura H: Systematic review of the association of mastication with food and nutrient intake in the independent elderly. Arch Gerontol Geriatr 2014; 59: 497-505.
  8. Van Lancker A, Verhaeghe S, Van Hecke A et al: The association between malnutrition and oral health status in elderly in long-term care facilities: a systematic review. Int J Nurs Stud 2012; 49: 1568-1581.
  9. van der Pols-Vijlbrief R, Wijnhoven HA, Schaap LA et al: Determinants of protein-energy malnutrition in community-dwelling older adults: a systematic review of observational studies. Ageing Res Rev 2014; 18: 112-131.

Date of last update: April 24, 2020 (LenaS)