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Forty percent of children currently not visiting their dentist

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Despite official dental health advice, more than 40% of children in England have not visited their dentist in the last year. The figures show that only 57.9% visited an NHS dentist, which is down by over 2% on the previous year.

Professor Nigel Hunt of the Royal College of Surgeons was quoted by The Guardian in response to the appalling figures, “There is nothing to smile about in these woeful statistics. With the average five-year-old now eating their own body weight in sugar each year, it is alarming that 42.1% of children failed to visit an NHS dentist in the last year.”

Experts are hopeful that revenue from the planned ‘sugar drinks tax’, due to take effect in 2018, will be put to good use in an attempt to tackle the growing issue of tooth decay. Dr Sandra White, of PublicHealth England, has also expressed concern over the wider arching effects that tooth decay can have on children. As well as the associated pain and dental treatment, decay can also impact on schooling, overall health and self-confidence.

She, along with other professionals, have implored parents, carers and guardians to limit the number of sugary snacks and drinks children are consuming, and to ensure that regular brushing is taking place.

 

 

 

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