Signs and symptoms of temporomandibular disorders and their impact on psychosocial status in non-patient university student's population

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Background and Purpose. Temporomandibular disorders (TMD) exhibit a combination of signs and symptoms, mainly characterized by pain and dysfunction, which impairs the functional capacity of the mastication system. These symptoms may produce a negative impact on social activities, employment and leisure. The aim of this study was to early identify the signs and symptoms of TMD and their impact on daily life of non-patient university students. Methods. Data were collected from 183 students of the dentistry course. The Axis II of the Research Diagnostic Criteria for Temporomandibular Disorders was administered and analyzed using Spearman test at a significance level of 0.05. Results. Among the 183 participants, 107 were women (58.47%) and 76 were men (41.53%). Age ranged from 18 to 47, with a mean age of 25.35 years. In relation to pain intensity and disability, 129 participants (70.88%) reported no pain in the previous 6 months. An analysis of depression revealed that 35 (19.67%) had moderate and 7 (3.83%) had severe depression. The assessment of nonspecific physical symptoms including pain revealed that nine (4.92%) exhibited moderate symptoms, and one (0.55%) exhibited severe symptoms. The nonspecific physical symptoms excluding items of pain analysis revealed that 44 (24.04%) exhibited moderate symptoms, and 91 (49.73%) exhibited severe. The functions reported as most adversely affected by jaw disability were yawning, eating hard foods, chewing, smiling and laughing. Regarding the habit, 64 (35%) confirmed having the nighttime and 59 daytime (32.3%) teeth grinding with a significant correlation with the four domains analyzed. A significant correlation was observed among all domains. Conclusion. This study analyzed a young population that exhibited para-functional habits and nonspecific physical symptoms excluding pain that need some intervention since they could progress to a symptomatic TMD in future. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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