Moynihan, Paula and Bradbury, Jane (2001) Compromised dental function and nutrition. Nutrition, 17 (2). pp. 177-178. ISSN 08999007

In Europe, approximately half of people aged 65 y and over have no natural teeth (edentulous), [1] and [2] and this loss of functional dentition imposes eating difficulties and food avoidance, which may be detrimental in terms of nutritional status and health. Adult health trends indicate that people now retain their natural teeth for longer. However, despite improvement, the majority of older people have impaired dental function. For example, in the UK, 58% of people aged 75 y and older and 36% of people ages 65–74 y have no natural teeth,1 and many of those with some teeth have fewer than the 21 teeth considered necessary for adequate dental function3 (the threshold of 20 or more natural teeth is often used to classify a person as “dentate”). Total tooth loss is not going to be eliminated in the foreseeable future. As the number of adults over 65 y old is predicted to increase by 82% over the next 25 y in Europe,2 it is likely that total tooth loss will continue to affect a significant number of people