Objective: To assess the prevalence of stress as an etiological factor for aphthous ulcers and temporomandibular disorders.
Study Design: Cross sectional descriptive study.
Place and Duration of Study: Armed Forces Institute of Dentistry Rawalpindi, from Oct 2015 to May 2016.
Material and Methods: Two groups of patients were selected. Group I included 119 patients presenting with Aphthous Ulcers while group II had 64 subjects with complaints of temporomandibular disorders (TMDs). After a thorough history, Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) was used to assess stress in the patients. AHADS-A score of 7 was taken as significant anxiety while a HADS-D score of 7 depicted significant depression. Both groups were then subjected to laboratory examinations. Serum cortisol levels were assessed for both groups while Serum Folate, Ferritin and Vitamin B12 level for group I only. Data were analyzed using SPSS version 21 to calculate descriptive statistics including mean and standard deviations as well as frequencies and percentages. Relationship between HADS score and serum cortisol levels was assessed using Pearson’s correlation coefficient. A p-value<0.05 was considered significant.
Results: For TMDs, 53 (82.8%) patients were found positive for stress while for aphthous ulcers, 61 (51.3%) were positive for stress. The correlation between HADS score and serum cortisol levels was found significant for both groups at a p=<0.001.
Conclusions: Patients showed a high prevalence of stress as an etiological factor for aphthous ulcers and
temporomandibular disorders in a local setting.
Keywords : Aphthous ulcers, Stress, Temporomandibular disorders