Patients with schizophrenia have been reported to suffer a variety of physical co-morbidities, which is considered to be attributable to their sedentary life-style and impairment in self-care as well as the side effects from psychotropic medications. In light of the chronic nature of this illness, identifying and managing these physical conditions is critically important in this population. Among these conditions, the clinical relevance of dental caries is often underestimated while other somatic conditions such as hypertension, diabetes mellitus and osteoporosis have received wide attention.[3,5 7]
In fact, better dental conditions are known to be associated with not only an enhanced quality of life for patients, but also better digestion. Previous surveys have demonstrated that patients with schizophrenia visit dentists less frequently, compared to healthy people, because of their difficult financial conditions and a lack of motivation in the maintenance of dental hygiene due to the illness.[10–12] However, while several previous surveys have examined demographic and clinical characteristics that are related with worse dental hygiene in schizophrenia,[13–17] such data are still limited in the literature.
Moreover, dental hygiene is expected to be subject to direct and indirect influences of current and local standards of care, which indicates a necessity of further information from various clinical settings in order to provide a robust agreement on this issue.nTherefore, in the present study, we conducted a cross-sectional study to identify variables associated with dental caries in a larger sample of persons with schizophrenia in Japan.