The number of children having their teeth extracted in England has increased, figures from the HSCIC have shown.
Numbers rose by 3% for 2014/15 with 33,781 children under the age of 10 requiring extractions, the statistics showed, prompting Sara Hurley, CDO for England, to describe the results as ‘disappointing’.
‘Even though people understand the impact of a sugary diet so many children have advanced tooth decay – a highly preventable disease,’ Sara Hurley said.
‘We are also creating a legacy of obesity and significant health problems.
‘If we are to get serious about tackling this then prevention is the key.’
Figures for extractions over the past three years are:
- 2014-15 – 33,781 episodes of care
- 2013-14 – 32,741 episodes of care
- 2012-13 – 31,275 episodes of care
The authors of the study explain that: ‘Nationally, there is a strong correlation between area deprivation and the rate of tooth extraction.
‘As deprivation increases so does the rate of tooth extraction.’
The Shadow Public Health Minister, Andrew Gwynne, told the BBC: ‘The Government should be standing up for parents, particularly those living in more deprived communities, and helping them to tackle tooth decay.’
Speaking in his blog about the rise in children’s decay, Michael Watson said: ‘Dentists have an obligation to address this epidemic of decay in children over and above their requirement to deliver a set number of UDAs.‘