Facts About Tooth Decay

Did you know that tooth decay is the #1 chronic childhood illness?

When left untreated, childhood tooth decay can be devastating to a child’s overall health and wellbeing.

Here are some concerning facts about childhood tooth decay in the United States today:

  • Pediatric dental disease is 7 times more common than seasonal allergies (hay fever) and 5 times more common than asthma.
  • Dental disease has been linked to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and a host of other life-threatening problems.
  • An estimated 17 million American children go without dental care every year.
  • Only 1.5% of 1 year olds have seen a dentist (compared with 89% who have seen a general physician).
  • More than 25% of children aged 2-5 years and 50% aged 12-15 suffer from tooth decay.
  • Untreated dental disease in a child can lead to malnourishment, bacterial infections, problems in eating, speaking, and learning, and emergency surgeries.

What can you do?

It’s important to care for your child’s teeth from the moment the first one sprouts. Brush them gently and keep them clean. Avoid leaving the child with a bottle full of sugar liquids or milk. Begin flossing as soon as all of the primary teeth have erupted (usually between ages 2 and 3). And visit your pediatric dentist early and often. Let us help you ensure your child grows up with healthy teeth and gums.

Your child’s baby teeth matter, and tooth decay in baby teeth is an enormous problem in the United States. Take these simples steps to give your child a head start and avoid the many consequences of childhood tooth decay.