The practice of dentistry: an assessment of reasons for premature retirement

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Aim: To assess reasons for premature retirement among practising dentists and to evaluate their association with occupational stress.

Design: Retrospective analysis.

Setting: Records from one organisation operating in the private medical sickness industry in the UK.

Materials: Reasons for premature retirement of 393 dentists due to illness between 1981 and 1992.

Results: The most frequent causes of premature retirement were musculoskeletal disorders (29.5%), cardiovascular disease (21.1%), and neurotic symptoms (16.5%), 82.7% of cases examined were in the > 50 years age group.

Conclusions: Musculoskeletal disorders and stress related illnesses were the two most important groups which influenced premature retirement

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