Statistics obtained by the Local Government Association reported that hospitals extracted multiple teeth from children and teenagers in England last year (2016-2017), totalling on average 42,911 extractions!!! This works out at approximately 170 cases per day, each involving the child having a general anaesthetic and at least 2 teeth removed. These figures are shocking and even more shocking they are on the rise. What is more alarming is that treating these children cost the NHS in 2016-2017 £36.2M!!! The fact that tooth decay is preventable makes these figures more disturbing. So what is the cause of these scandalous figures? Health campaigners said the 'alarming' trend in these rising figures showed children were eating far too many sweet foods and that prompt tough action should be taken to cut their sugar intake. So what do we advise?
Restrict sugar intake
It has been proven that the teeth can only cope with three 'acid/sugar' attacks per day so we would firstly advise that sweet treats should be restricted and consumed directly after meal times only. Similarly, If you are going to allow your child sugary drinks allow them to consume these at mealtimes only. A better alternative would be to encourage them to drink milk or water.
If your child is hungry in between meals then encourage them to eat 'safe' snacks as oppose to sugary unhealthy snacks. Safe snacks include foods such as toast, fruit, crackers, carrot sticks and cheese and drinks like water or milk. For more safe snack ideas click on the following link https://www.colgate.com/en-us/oral-health/basics/nutrition-and-oral-health/smart-snacks-for-healthy-teeth
Brush twice a day
Ensure your child is brushing their teeth twice a day - morning and night. Brushing should last for 2 minutes and a toothpaste containing fluoride should be used. Children under 7 should have an adult brush their teeth for them.
Regular Dental check-ups
Ensure your child visits the dentist regularly. Regular visits allow us to detect any problems early on and practice preventative dentistry, allowing us to treat any problems before they start causing symptoms or pain.
Because 'baby teeth do matter' and because we really do care, we are currently taking on Children aged 18 and under. So if you know someone who needs an NHS dentist give us a call on 01204 491946.