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 Table of Contents  
LETTER TO EDITOR
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 236-237

Are patients with removable oral prosthesis more susceptible to COVID-19 infection?


Parul Institute of Public Health, Parul University, Vadodara, Gujarat, India

Date of Submission14-Jul-2020
Date of Acceptance27-Jul-2020
Date of Web Publication30-Nov-2020

Correspondence Address:
Priya Kotwani
Parul Institute of Public Health, Parul University, Vadodara - 391 760, Gujarat
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jdrr.jdrr_85_20

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How to cite this article:
Kotwani P, Patwardhan V. Are patients with removable oral prosthesis more susceptible to COVID-19 infection?. J Dent Res Rev 2020;7:236-7

How to cite this URL:
Kotwani P, Patwardhan V. Are patients with removable oral prosthesis more susceptible to COVID-19 infection?. J Dent Res Rev [serial online] 2020 [cited 2021 Jan 24];7:236-7. Available from: https://www.jdrr.org/text.asp?2020/7/4/236/302060



Dear Editor,

COVID-19 disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a pandemic that has affected almost all the countries of the world. The primary mode of transmission of this disease is through respiratory droplet spread. The person can contract the virus either through direct inhalation or through touching the inanimate objects contaminated with the virus.[1]

SARS-CoV-2 is known to cause respiratory distress, more so in older individuals. Center for Disease Control also states that older individual are at higher risk of contracting severe illness which may require intensive care.[2] A study done in China reports that as compared to young- and middle-aged individuals, higher proportion of elderly COVID-19 patients suffer from Pneumonia Severity Index Grades IV and V with higher likelihood of mortality.[3] Furthermore, in India, it is observed that 50% of total death count accounts to 60 years and above age group.[4]

Aging is known to influence oral health. In a country like India, with poor awareness of oral hygiene, individuals are predisposed to developing periodontitis leading to loss of tooth. A study reports that age is a risk factor for developing periodontitis with higher prevalence in older-aged individuals.[5] Around 50% of the older individuals are edentulous.[6] With degenerative changes due to aging, many geriatric patients have to resort to removable oral prosthesis for carrying out their mastication.

Keeping in mind, the fact that SARS-CoV-2 virus can spread through contaminated inanimate objects; the removable prosthesis can act as a potential agent for transmission, especially in the older individuals. With the emergence of COVID-19 disease, scientific literature is available informing the preventive measures that should be adopted by the dental practitioners.[7] However, there seems a significant gap in awareness regarding the preventive measures that should be adopted by the patient using removable oral prosthesis.

There is a need to emphasize the importance of cleaning denture before its placement in oral cavity as studies report that only half of the denture-wearers perform cleaning of their prosthesis and majority of them use only water and toothbrush.[8],[9] Denture cleaning must be carried out by soaking in potent disinfectants such as 0.1% sodium hypochlorite (10 min) or 0.5% hydrogen peroxide (30 min) or any other disinfectant with proven efficacy against SARS-CoV-2 virus followed by cleaning with brush and toothpaste.[10],[11]

The authors propose that patients with removable oral prosthesis are more susceptible to acquiring COVID-19 infection. Thus, considering various scientific evidences suggesting more susceptibility of old-age population to COVID-19, it is crucial to initiate a dialogue on every possible mode of acquiring infection. Substantial empirical evidences must be generated through a well-designed clinical research to further corroborate this hypothesis. In addition, it is pivotal to disseminate information and awareness about the correct practices that should be employed to avert any loss of life amidst the pandemic.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
Coronaviruses (COVID-19). Available from: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/question-and-answers-hub/q-a-detail/q-a-coronaviruses. [Last accessed on 2020 Jun 29].  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
CDC. COVID-19 Older Adults. Available from: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/need-extra-precautions/older-adults.html. [Last accessed on 2020 Jul 01].  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Liu K, Chen Y, Lin R, Han K. Clinical features of COVID-19 in elderly patients: A comparison with young and middle-aged patients. J Infect 2020;80:e14-8.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Covid deaths: Over 50% above 60 yrs; 73% had other illnesses India News-Times of India. Available from: https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/covid-deaths-over-50-above-60-yrs-73-had-other-illnesses/articleshow/75879310.cms. [Last accessed on 2020 Jul 02].  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Shaju JP, Zade RM, Das M. Prevalence of periodontitis in the Indian population: A literature review. J Indian Soc Periodontol 2011;15:29-34.  Back to cited text no. 5
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6.
Shabana Begum S, Reddy VC, Kumar RV, Sudhir K, Srinivasulu G, Noushad Ali S. Tooth loss prevalence and risk indicators among adult people visiting community health centers in Nellore district, Andhra Pradesh: A cross-sectional study. Indian Assoc Public Heal Dent 2016;14:413. Available from: http://www.jiaphd.org/text.asp?2016/14/4/413/195829. [Last accessed on 2020 Jul 01].  Back to cited text no. 6
    
7.
Ather A, Patel B, Ruparel NB, Diogenes A, Hargreaves KM. Coronavirus Disease 19 (COVID-19): Implications for Clinical Dental Care. J Endod 2020;46:584-95.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.
Roshene R, Robin P, Raj JD. A survey of denture hygiene in older patients. Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research. 2015;7:897.  Back to cited text no. 8
    
9.
Apratim A, Shah SS, Sinha M, Agrawal M, Chhaparia N, Abubakkar A. Denture hygiene habits among elderly patients wearing complete dentures. J Contemp Dent Pract 2013;14:1161-4.  Back to cited text no. 9
    
10.
Karthikeyan S, Asharaf Ali S. Denture disinfectants used in prosthodontics: A Review. Available from: http://www.ijcmr.com. [Last accessed 2020 Jul 01].  Back to cited text no. 10
    
11.
Kampf G, Todt D, Pfaender S, Steinmann E. Persistence of coronaviruses on inanimate surfaces and their inactivation with biocidal agents. J Hosp Infect 2020;104:246-51.  Back to cited text no. 11
    




 

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