Background. Older persons with smoking histories are important targets for oral cancer screening. Although older persons in low-income communities often lack regular dental care, little is known about the characteristics of groups at greatest risk for poor screening. Methods. Survey data from 576 African-American women aged 45-93 were used to identify predictors of smoking and recency and type of dental care. Results. Fifty-nine percent of respondents were current or former smokers, and 62% reported dental care within the past 3 years. Among smokers, no recent dental care was associated with older age, worse health, not working, no regular medical provider, and no recent mammography. Conclusions. These results suggest that episodic visits to nondentist providers offer opportunities for oral screening in high-risk populations.
- Oral cancer
- Preventive care
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health