Dental Research Journal

Anxiety, depression, and oral health: A population-based study in Southeast of Iran


Depression and anxiety are two psychosocial illnesses that mostly are comorbid. The prevalence of these diseases is increasing worldwide. Both can affect general health also oral and dental health. The effects can be physiological and behavioral. Patients with these disorders are not willing to keep oral hygiene. The purpose of this study was to investigate the association between depression/anxiety and oral health indices in the 15–75-year-old population of Kerman.

Materials and Methods:

This cross-sectional study recruited 5900 people aged 15–75 years through one-stage cluster sampling (Kerman coronary artery disease risk factors study, KERCADRS). Data were collected through beck questionnaires for anxiety and depression and clinical examinations. Oral health indices including decayed, missing, filled teeth, gingival index (GI), and community periodontal index (CPI) were also measured. Data were analyzed by SPSS 21 software. Chi-square, t-test and regression analysis were used to determine the relationship between the variables. P ≤0.05 was considered as the level of statistical significance.


In the study, 1975 (33.6%) of patients showed moderate-to-severe anxiety and 3502 (59.5%) got the scores as depressed. There was a significant difference between GI and CPI indices of the normal and depressed group (P < 0.01), but the difference in the anxious and normal group was not statistically significant (P > 0.05).


The results of the study showed a significant relationship between depression and oral health indices but not with anxiety. Therefore, the present study suggests that more attention should be paid to the oral health of people with a history of depression.