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Quality of life of smokers with periodontal disease: impact of Covid-19 lockdowns

   Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health

   Applications accepted all year round  Self-Funded PhD Students Only

About the Project

Across the UK, since 2010, there has been a gradual decrease in the number of smokers from 20.1% to 14.1% (1). Smoking cessation has a positive impact in patients with periodontal disease, and current smokers present an increased risk of tooth loss in comparison to former smokers (2). Thus, consistent with the UN’s SDG 3 ‘Good health and well-being’, the Department of Health (3) aims to see England as a tobacco-free country by 2030. Various smoking control regulations were introduced in England in the last decade, for instance, banning smoking in enclosed public places in 2007, training of medical and dental professionals in the practical delivery of smoking cessation, etc. Unfortunately, it seems that lockdowns imposed during the Covid-19 pandemic have had a contrasting effect on smoking, with some individuals encouraged to smoke due to boredom, stress and a sense of isolation and anxiety, whereas some individuals used lockdown to stop smoking (4, 5). It is therefore important to understand the new picture of smoking in the UK and the factors influencing smoking cessation in adults with periodontal disease to mitigate the oral health risks.

 The methodological focus of this project is based on mixed methods to investigate the cessation rates and oral health-related quality of life (OHRQoL) among participant. The success of those who stopped smoking before the pandemic and those who ceased smoking during or immediately after pandemic will be compared. This exploratory study should help to understand how an adults’ tobacco behaviour changed during the pandemic and how this may have impacted the oral health of participants who were successful in stopping smoking. As OHRQoL is multidimensional, allowing to evaluate not only the individual’s oral health, but also “functional well-being, emotional well-being, expectations and satisfaction with care, and sense of self” (4), the findings of this PhD project would be useful in informing the clinical practice of dentistry further.

1.     Candidates are expected to hold (or be about to obtain) a minimum upper second class honours degree (or equivalent) in a related area / subject. 

2.     For information on how to apply for this project, please visit the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health Doctoral Academy website ( Informal enquiries may be made directly to the primary supervisor. On the online application form select the PhD title.

3.     For international students we also offer a unique 4 year PhD programme that gives you the opportunity to undertake an accredited Teaching Certificate whilst carrying out an independent research project across a range of biological, medical and health sciences. For more information please visit

Medicine (26)

Funding Notes

Applications are invited from self-funded students. This project has a Band 1 fee. Details of our different fee bands can be found on our website (View Website
Equality, diversity and inclusion is fundamental to the success of The University of Manchester, and is at the heart of all of our activities. The full Equality, diversity and inclusion statement can be found on the website View Website


Schnitzer K, Jones S, Kelley JHK et al. A Qualitative Study of the Impact of COVID-19 on Smoking Behavior for Participants in a Post-Hospitalization Smoking Cessation Trial. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021;18(10):5404. doi:10.3390/ijerph18105404
Leite F, Nascimento G, Baake S et al. Impact of Smoking Cessation on Periodontitis: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Prospective Longitudinal Observational and Interventional Studies. Nicotine & Tobacco Research. 2018; 21 (1).
Duarte PM, Nogueira CFP, Silva Smet al. Impact of Smoking Cessation on Periodontal Tissues, Int Dental Journal. 2019; 21 (12): 1600–1608. doi:10.1093/ntr/nty147
Duarte PM, Nogueira CFP, Silva SM, Pannuti CM, Schey KC, Miranda TS. Impact of Smoking Cessation on Periodontal Tissues. Int Dent J. 2021 Feb 27: S0020-6539(21)00035-6. doi: 10.1016/j.identj.2021.01.016.

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