Calls For More To Be Done For Children’s Oral Health
The number of tooth extractions being carried out on children under the age of 18 has increased substantially, prompting calls for more to be done to reduce the sugar intake in many young people’s diets.
Figures from the Local Government Association (LGA) revealed that 45,077 extractions of multiple teeth were carried out among under 18s in 2017/18, an 18 per cent increase in the past six years.
The organisation also revealed that these procedures cost the NHS a total of £38.9 million in the past year.
Although the government has announced sugar reduction guidelines in nine food categories, the LGA doesn’t believe this goes far enough. It also wants to see teaspoon measures of sugar printed on packaging, and for the sugar in soft drinks to be cut.
Chairman of the LGA’s Community Wellbeing Board Ian Hudspeth commented: “These figures, which have risen sharply, highlight the damage that excessive sugar intake is doing to young people’s teeth.”
He added that introducing measures to reduce sugar intake is just one part of what needs to be done.
“There must be a reinvestment in innovative oral health education so that parents and children understand the impact of sugar on teeth and the importance of a good oral hygiene regime,” Mr Hudspeth concluded.
A green paper published by the government recently also recommended fluoridation of water, noting that it is one of the most effective ways to reduce the rates of tooth decay in the UK.
If you’ve got children, make sure that you book them regular appointments with a children’s dentist in Guildford to keep an eye on the state of their teeth and to catch any problems early.