The BDA has called for a coordinated joined up partnership to tackle the crisis on children’s oral health.
These latest calls came after My Dentist published a survey showing how a lack of understanding around oral health among parents is costing the NHS £22 million a year, with tooth decay being the leading cause of hospital admissions among children, 46,500 children are admitted annually to have teeth removed under general anaesthetic.
‘Tooth decay is the leading cause of hospital admissions among our nation’s children and parents, teachers and policymakers need to take their share of responsibility,’ Mick Armstrong, chair of the British Dental Association (BDA), said.
‘We have to get children into the habit of good oral health, and that will require partnership and commitment on all sides.
‘It requires an end to mixed messages.
‘We have to be clear that sugar hurts mouths as well as waistlines.
‘We are dealing with a preventable disease, and it’s vital that parents understand the regular free check-ups are the best defence.’
‘Policymakers have demonstrated a shocking indifference to the nation’s oral health.
‘Yet in Scotland we’ve seen real innovation.
‘The Childsmile programme has reached out to nurseries and primary schools to turn oral health problems around.
‘Already it has cut NHS treatment bills, and shown that dental disease and deprivation don’t have to go hand in hand.’