Tooth Decay in Children Seeing a Steady Decline

For years, Tooth Decay in children has been on an incline.

Tooth decay in children has been a hot topic over here on the Defacto Dentists blog for many months. For a long time, tooth decay has been the number one reason for planned hospital admissions among children. And the worst part? Tooth decay is entirely preventable.

New statistics are showing a steady decline.

The latest figures from the Child Oral Health Survey show 23.3% of five-year-old children in England had decayed, missing or filled teeth in 2017, a drop from 30.9% in 2008. While this 23.3% is still too high for our liking, we’re glad the rate of tooth decay in children is seeing a steady decline.

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Unfortunately, there are still inequalities.

Children in the most deprived areas of the UK are still suffering. While Tooth Decay in Children is seeing a steady decline children from less fortunate backgrounds have statistically worse oral health than those in the most affluent areas. While it is nice to see a decline in some areas, a quarter of children in England are still suffering from this preventable condition.

BDA has claimed the Government cannot ignore the growing divide between local authorities with the best and worst oral health results. In Scotland and Wales, there are government campaigns in place to educate both children and parents about developing and maintaining good oral health habits in kids. These campaigns have been incredibly successful and subsequently, have saved the NHS millions. There is no similar type of government campaign and dental leaders from the BDA have recommended that a similar campaign be developed and implemented.

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How can tooth decay be prevented?

Well, it starts at home. The sooner you develop good oral health habits at home, the better. The more care a child takes of their teeth from a young age, the less time they’ll spend in the big chair as an adult. Ensuring your child is brushing twice a day for two minutes is the first step  to good oral health. Encourage flossing too, although this might take a bit of practice. Ask their dentist to show them what to do if they’re struggling. Speaking of the dentist, ensure they’re visiting for check ups at least twice a year, or sooner if they’re in pain or needing treatment.

Registering your child with a dentist.

If you need to register your child with a dentist, we can help you. On our website,, we have thousands of dentists who are ready and waiting to treat you and your kids! A simple location search will highlight all of the practices in your area. Then from the checklist on the left, select ‘child friendly’ to narrow the search. Browse through the practices, get to know the practice teams and the treatments on offer. Then, simply get in touch with the one that suits you and your child best.

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