According to Taiwan’s Health Affairs Department, about 80% of the islands five-year-olds have dental cavities and the average number of cavities among twelve-year-olds is 2.5, compared to the worldwide average of 1.67.
The Department said that the World Health Organisation (WHO) set a target in the year 2000 to control the rate of decay among the children of Taiwan, aiming at less than 50%, which indicates that there is still a long way to go with dental health. It has been suggested that parents give their children less sweets and sugary treats, as well as encouraging them to brush twice a day to avoid decay. Good oral hygiene is vital if the teeth and gums are going to be kept in good condition; periodontal disease and tooth decay are the two most common dental problems in the country and they can led to other health concerns if they are left to deteriorate over a long period of time.
A study that took place in 2012 at China’s Ministry of Health showed that the number of children with cavities was lower than today, at 66% for five-year-olds, and 29% for twelve-year-olds. The numbers also revealed that only 14.5% of adults and 14.1% of senior citizens have healthy teeth, which suggests that a large percentage of the population have poor dental health.