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Periodontics Restorative Dentistry Supporting Your Practice

What is the relationship between harmful alcohol use and periodontal status across gender and tobacco use?

Perio ChartThis summary is based on the article published in the BMC Oral Health: Association between harmful alcohol use and periodontal status according to gender and smoking (June 2014)

Hyang-Sun Kim, Ji-Hyun Son, Hee-Yong Yi, Hae-Kyoung Hong, Hyoun-Jun Seo, and Kwang-Hak Bae




Periodontitis is a chronic and long-lasting low-grade inflammatory disease that leads to a break-down of the connective tissue and bone that anchors the teeth to the jaws. (1, 2)

Long-term and excessive alcohol consumption can influence host defenses causing toxic damage, which is implicated in a wide variety of diseases, disorders, and injuries such as oropharyngeal cancer, liver cirrhosis, pancreatitis, hypertension, gastritis, diabetes, some forms of stroke, and mental disorders such as depression. (3-5)

As chronic and even acute, moderate alcohol use can increase host susceptibility to infections caused by bacterial pathogens and impaired host defense after alcohol exposure appears to be linked to a combination of decreased inflammatory response, altered cytokine production, and abnormal reactive oxygen intermediate generation (6), it may be related to periodontitis independently of other potential confounders.

Purpose of the Study

To assess the association of harmful alcohol use based on the Alcohol use disorders identification test (AUDIT) score with periodontal status according to gender and smoking in a representative sample of Korean adults.

Key Messages

Periodontal status is significantly associated with harmful alcohol use in men and nonsmokers in a representative sample of Korean adults.


  1. Li P, He L, Sha YQ, Luan QX: Relationship of metabolic syndrome to chronic periodontitis. J Periodontol 2009, 80:541–549.
  2. Williams RC: Periodontal disease. N Engl J Med 1990, 323:373–382.
  3. World Health Organization: Problems related to alcohol consumption, Report of a WHO Expert Committee. Geneva: Tech. Report Series 650. World Health Organization; 1980.
  4. Edwards G, Anderson P, Babor TF, Edwards G, Anderson P, Babor T, Casswell S, Ferrence R, Giesbrecht N, Godfrey C, Holder Harold D, Lemmens P, Makela K, Midanik Lorraine T, Norstrom T, Osterberg E, Romelsjo A, Room R, Simpura J, Skog O-J: Alcohol Policy and the Public Good. Oxford: Oxford University Press; 1994.
  5. Amaral Cda S, Vettore MV, Leão A: The relationship of alcohol dependence and alcohol consumption with periodontitis: a systematic review. J Dent 2009, 37:643–651.
  6. Szabo G: Consequences of alcohol consumption on host defence. Alcohol Alcohol 1999, 34:830–841.


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