Life Conditions: Non-Specific Stress Indicators and Dentoalveolar Pathologies

Romina Mosticone, Lisa Pescucci, Flavia Porreca

Abstract


Trauma, diseases, diet, daily work and environmental factors shape bodies. From birth to death, these processes leave on the skeleton markers that can be recognized and studied, thus providing an overview of the health conditions of past populations. The present work analyzes data collected in seven necropolises. During our study, we exploited nonspecific stress and dental pathologies as key indicators of health conditions. In particular, we analyzed the three most common indicators of stress: porotic hyperostosis; enamel hypoplasia; and Harris lines on shins. Additionally, we examined the most important dental alveolar pathologies, including carious lesions, periodontal diseases, antemortem tooth loss, abscesses, and calculi. The data we analyzed suggest that, despite the different urban and suburban origins, all the samples belong to a middle-range or low social class, whose living conditions were modest. The only necropolis which stands out is Casal Bertone Mausoleo, where the samples present the lowest frequencies with respect to both the stress indicators and the oral pathologies, suggesting better living conditions.


Key words: Non-specific stress indicators - Dentoalveolar pathologies - Life conditions - Imperial Age


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