Although oral health-related quality of life (OHRQoL) as measured by the Oral Health Impact Profile (OHIP) is thought to be multidimensional, the nature of these dimensions is not known. The aim of this report was to explore the dimensionality of the OHIP using the Dimensions of OHRQoL (DOQ) Project, an international study of general population subjects and prosthodontic patients. Using the project's Learning Sample (n = 5173), we conducted an exploratory factor analysis on the 46 OHIP items not specifically referring to dentures for 5146 subjects with sufficiently complete data. The first eigenvalue (27·0) of the polychoric correlation matrix was more than ten times larger than the second eigenvalue (2·6), suggesting the presence of a dominant, higher-order general factor. Follow-up analyses with Horn's parallel analysis revealed a viable second-order, four-factor solution. An oblique rotation of this solution revealed four highly correlated factors that we named Oral Function, Oro-facial Pain, Oro-facial Appearance and Psychosocial Impact. These four dimensions and the strong general factor are two viable hypotheses for the factor structure of the OHIP.
- Exploratory factor analysis
- Factor structure
- Oral health impact profile
- Oral health-related quality of life