Tooth decay in children has become a serious health issue
There is a very serious health epidemic sweeping through the UK and it is not one of the traditional childhood illnesses such as measles, chickenpox or mumps. This latest health catastrophe concerns tooth decay in children and it is so serious that according to Public Health England figures, over 60,000 children had to have teeth removed under general anaesthetic in hospital last year. The real tragedy about this tooth decay in children epidemic is that it is virtually all wholly preventable.
Today’s generation of youngsters it seems, just cannot resist binging on sugary snacks and drinks, and the result is a massive rise in the incidence of tooth decay in children.
Just take a look at these alarming statistics:
- One child has rotten teeth pulled out every 10-minutes.
- Last year there were 141 operations every day to extract children’s teeth.
- Tooth decay is now the biggest single cause of hospital admission for 5 – 9-year-olds.
- The worst affected age group to suffer tooth decay in children is 5 – 9-year-olds followed closely by 10 – 14-year-olds.
- One-quarter of 5-year olds starting primary school already have tooth decay.
The cause of this dental health tragedy is very simple to pinpoint. Too much and too frequent consumption of sugar – that is found in snacks and drinks. Poor dental health disciplines including lax brushing and poor cleaning techniques. Plus a failure to attend regular dental examinations.
Young children will hardly ever be able to resist the temptation of chomping on sweets or gulping down sugar-laden drinks. Most children will also strive to put-off cleaning their teeth properly. So the fault behind these tragic statistics must lie with better supervision.
At Carisbrook and as one of the country’s leading dental clinics, we cannot stress enough the importance of a sensible diet and a rigorous dental hygiene routine.
We would far rather that parents intervene and take control. A major part of our preventative dentistry advice is the importance of teaching children the correct brushing and cleaning techniques. Our cleaning advice suggests that parents should always supervise teeth cleaning for young children to make sure that they do it properly.
We also advise parents to ration the amount of sugar their children consume and we recommend that sweets and treats should always be part of a meal. Never just a snack during the day when sugar will remain on young teeth and begin the process of tooth decay.
We also recommend that children are better off drinking non-sweetened drinks to help protect their young teeth.
By encouraging these disciplines at a young age children will quickly learn to avoid damaging foods and drinks and will recognise the importance of good dental hygiene practices.
Our final piece of advice is to make regular check-up dental appointments. This means children get used to visiting their dentist, while at the same time the dentist can keep an eye on the condition of their teeth and take preventative action should they spot any potential problem.
We all owe it to our children to help them care for their teeth, which have to last a lifetime. If you would like further advice or would like to make an appointment please contact us now. You can call us on 0161 951 7295 or you can contact us by using the online booking form on our Appointments page.
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