Encyclopedia of Public Health

2008 Edition
| Editors: Wilhelm Kirch

Risk Factors and High Risk Groups

  • Christian Hirsch
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-5614-7_3040


Causal factors; Etiological factor; Risk indicator


In dentistry a risk factor is a variable associated with an increased risk of an  oral disease. However, risk factors are not necessarily causal. Risk factors include aspects of a person's condition (genetics ), lifestyle or environment. Various combinations of risk factors lead to the disease. The more risk factors are involved in the disease process the more complex is the etiology of the disease. Risk factors with dental public health importance should contribute a considerably attributable risk for the disease process and should be modifiable by public health measures. Subjects of high risk groups show more often such patterns of risk factor combinations which lead to an earlier disease onset and – in consequence – to a higher disease prevalence .

Basic Characteristics

Specific or Common Risk Factors for Oral Diseases

For a long time research in dentistry was aimed at specific biological risk factors...

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christian Hirsch
    • 1
  1. 1.Abteilung für Kinderzahnheilkunde und PrimärprophylaxePoliklinik für Kieferorthopädie und Kinderzahnheilkunde, Universität LeipzigLeipzigGermany