Ignoring fresh recommendations over sugar consumption could lead to thousands of children suffering from poor oral health.
This warning comes from the British Society of Dental Hygiene and Therapy (BSDHT) after Public Health England (PHE) released a report pointing to the need for high level intervention on sugar, including banning price promotions and a 10-20% sugar tax on soft drinks.
‘This report confirms what we have known for a long time; we need to act now on our nation’s addiction to sugar and stop children suffering from potentially painful and distressing oral health problems,’ Michaela ONeill, president of the BSDHT said.
‘Shockingly, a recent study found half of eight-year-olds have visible signs of decay on their teeth and a third of children are starting school with visible signs of tooth decay.
‘Children’s tooth extractions cost the NHS around £30 million per year with the key cause being tooth decay.
‘The BSDHT and our members have long campaigned for action on sugar and these recommendations need to be seriously reviewed and acted upon; the evidence is all there and ignoring them would simply be reckless.
‘The BSDHT continues to strive to improve children’s oral health though education within dental practices and schools with our First Smiles initiative.
‘But the Government needs to act on this report and support the dental industry if we are to really help future generations of children benefit from healthier diets and also allow parents to understand how destructive too much sugar can be to their oral health.’