O termalismo e a saúde oral
: um estudo observacional nas termas de Amarante

  • Susana de Lurdes Dias Morgado (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


Introduction: Oral health represents a devastating Public Health problem due to its remarkable social impact and medical costs. Crenotherapy with sulfur water is shown to be a complementary, less toxic, and traumatizing therapy. The number of studies that evaluate the effect of natural mineral waters in the treatment of oral mucosa disorders (OMD) is relatively small and in Portugal it is even non-existent. Objective: To qualitatively evaluate the impact of thermal therapy on the perception of the severity of the symptoms of OMD, investigating the relationship between the effects of thermalism: in the main symptomatology, functional capacity of the thermal practitioners (functional class), use of the dentist and medication for treatment. Investigate whether the thermal treatment may be promising in reducing the financial expenses associated with Oral Health. Methodology: Epidemiological, observational, cross-sectional and comparative study with the beginning of treatment and controlled with saline solution, in which 90 thermalists were randomly allocated to two treatment groups for 14 days: Sulfuric natural mineral water (NMW) of Amarante Thermal SPA (ATS) (n=45) or saline solution (SF) (n=45), in May 2022. The study was based on clinical observation and application of a self-response questionnaire, consisting of 2 main sections: sociodemographic data and quality of life assessment. The latter was subdivided into 7 subsections: symptom assessment, use of the dentist, use of medication for the treatment of oral disorders, functional assessment, global assessment by the therapist and the dentist and comments. The evaluation was carried out in 2 different moments: before treatment and at the end of treatment (14 days), with follow-up at 3 and 6 months after thermal treatment. Results: In the collected sample, it is observed that globally 70% (n=63) are women and that these are also the majority in each group. In terms of age, the groups have a relatively close mean age: 57.13±18.505 and 56.76±16.079 for AMN and SF, respectively. As for the professional situation, it is observed that in both groups, individuals who are retired together with the housewives prevail. Regarding residence, most respondents from both groups live in urban areas. All data were entered into a Microsoft Office Excel 2007 database, created for this purpose, and worked on in SPSS software (Statistical Package for the Social Science Inc., Chicago, Illinois, USA) version 25.0. For all tests used, the null hypothesis was rejected, when the probability of significance was less than or equal to 0.05. Changes observed at the end of treatment were always compared with the values before treatment. Overall, the evolution of the parameters evaluated was positive, with significant changes at the end of the treatment. Conclusion: The results suggest that the treatment with sulfur and fluoride NMW, carried out in the ATS, may constitute an effective therapeutic/preventive procedure in OMD. Future lines of investigation are necessary in this area, to corroborate these results, to evaluate the temporal evolution and the economic impact of the OMD thermalism.
Date of Award15 Jul 2022
Original languagePortuguese
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorNélio Jorge Veiga (Supervisor), Maria José Correia (Co-Supervisor) & Patrícia Couto (Co-Supervisor)


  • Thermal treatment
  • Fluoridated sulfur waters
  • Amarante thermal SPA
  • Oral mucosa disorders
  • Quality of life assessment


  • Mestrado em Medicina Dentária

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