University of Oulu

Miettinen, O.; Kämppi, A.; Tanner, T.; Anttonen, V.; Patinen, P.; Päkkilä, J.; Tjäderhane, L.; Sipilä, K. Association of Temporomandibular Disorder Symptoms with Physical Fitness among Finnish Conscripts. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 3032.

Association of temporomandibular disorder symptoms with physical fitness among Finnish conscripts

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Author: Miettinen, Ossi1; Kämppi, Antti2; Tanner, Tarja1,3;
Organizations: 1Research Unit of Oral Health Sciences, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 5281, 90014 Oulu, Finland
2Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Diseases, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 41, 00014 Helsinki, Finland
3Medical Research Center Oulu (MRC Oulu), Oulu University Hospital, P.O. Box 5281, 90014 Oulu, Finland
4Centre for Military Medicine, Finnish Defense Forces, P.O. Box 10, 11311 Riihimäki, Finland
5Department of Mathematical Sciences, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 3000, 90014 Oulu, Finland
6Helsinki University Hospital, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 41, 00014 Helsinki, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.3 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2021
Publish Date: 2021-04-23


Studies on the role of physical fitness, physical activity and obesity as risk factors for temporomandibular disorders (TMD) are scarce. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the association of TMD symptoms with physical fitness, physical activity and body mass index (BMI) among Finnish conscripts. The study sample consisted of 8685 Finnish conscripts. Data on self-reported TMD symptoms were used as outcome variables. Physical activity (questionnaire), physical fitness (measured with physical tests: Cooper test, push-ups, sit-ups and standing long jump) and body mass index (BMI) were used as explanatory variables. The associations between TMD symptoms and explanatory variables were evaluated using Chi-squared test and logistic regression analysis. The prevalence of all TMD symptoms was significantly higher among those who exercised more rarely than weekly. Pain-related TMD symptoms were also significantly more frequent among those who were overweight (BMI ≥ 25). Poor push-up results and overweight (BMI ≥ 25) were significantly associated with jaw pain and TMJ pain at jaw rest. The present study showed that good physical fitness may be a protective factor against TMD pain. Dentists should also be prepared to motivate TMD patients to physical activity and regular exercise as part of the treatment.

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Series: International journal of environmental research and public health
ISSN: 1661-7827
ISSN-E: 1660-4601
ISSN-L: 1661-7827
Volume: 18
Issue: 6
Article number: 3032
DOI: 10.3390/ijerph18063032
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 313 Dentistry
Copyright information: © 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (