Effect of social isolation on oral health status - A systematic review

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  • Frederico S. Lages
  • Dhelfeson W. Douglas-de-Oliveira


Aim: To determine the magnitude of the association between social isolation and oral health in adults. Materials and Methods: Systematic review based on PRISMA guidelines. Observational studies and clinical trials were obtained by searching the electronic databases of
PubMed/MEDLINE, Web of Science, Scopus, Cochrane Library electronic, SciELO, Science Direct and Embase. Hand searches and gray
literature were included. Two researchers independently selected the studies, extracted data, and analyzed and assessed their methodological quality. The Rayyan QCRI web-based tool was used to manage and cite references, and the risk of bias was estimated according to
the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions. Meta-analysis was not performed due to insufficient data. Results: The
search retrieved 2545 articles. Full texts of 14 articles were read, and 1 clinical trial and 3 cross-sectional studies were included. All the
studies reported on oral function, but none assessed plaque or caries parameters. The cross-sectional studies presented high risk of bias.
None of the studies associated social isolation with oral health. Conclusions: There is no strong evidence for an association between
social isolation and oral health in adults. Regular oral hygiene practice should be encouraged, recommended and maintained at this time
of social isolation, to maintain oral health.
Keywords: oral health, coronavirus, COVID-19, Social isolation

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