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versión impresa ISSN 0797-0374versión On-line ISSN 1688-9339


ROTEMBERG, Enrique et al. Perception of the oral health status of drug-dependent individuals. Odontoestomatología [online]. 2020, vol.22, n.36, pp.44-54.  Epub 01-Dic-2020. ISSN 0797-0374.

General objective:

To determine the perception of adolescents and young adults regarding drug abuse as a result of drug dependence.

Materials and methods:

a qualitative research model was proposed. The theoretical sample by saturation included adolescents and young adults treated at Portal Amarillo. Inclusion criteria: a) aged between 15 and 24, b) in treatment for drug use. Exclusion criteria: a) non-lucid patients, b) non-collaborating patients.


Participants viewed oral health as having clean, white and aligned teeth; and caries, bleeding gums and communicable diseases as disease; chewing, aesthetics and taste were seen as altered functions. Before drug dependence, their oral hygiene was regular, after meals, and following the instructions received. With addiction, hygiene became irregular, only if they remembered to do it and without instruction reinforcement. Before drug consumption, participants were students or held a job; they had a good family life, with a partner, or in search of one. After consumption, they report self-marginalization, loss of contact with partners and children, isolation from the family, and social discrimination. Consumption makes it difficult for them to seek dental care, except in emergency situations.


Young people in treatment for drug dependence are aware that addiction damages oral health, deteriorating aesthetics, affecting oral functions, self-esteem, and quality of life.

Palabras clave : oral health; drug dependence; adolescent; young adult.

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