We work in the dental sector so it’s no surprise to us to see today’s dental figures for children in the UK. That doesn’t mean it’s any less shocking though.
The fact remains, children are losing more teeth than ever before due to dental decay caused mainly by sugary treats and missed dental check ups.
It’s a sad fact, but today’s hospitals in England are seeing thousands of very young children each year needing baby teeth removed.
The Faculty of Dental Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons, which compiled the data, blames tooth decay linked to sugary diets.
Figures show there were 9,206 extractions carried out on children aged four and younger between April 2015 and March 2016.
A decade ago, it was closer to 7,400 extractions.
That is a rise of about 24 per cent in the space of a decade – more than you would expect from population growth alone, says the faculty.
However, the total number of extractions for children aged nine or under fell slightly last year, from 34,788 extractions in 2014/15 to 34,003 in 2015/16.
Lead researcher Prof Nigel Hunt said: “When you see the numbers tallied up like this, it becomes abundantly clear that the sweet habits of our children are having a devastating effect on the state of their teeth.
“That children as young as one or two need to have teeth extracted is shocking.
“What is really distressing about these figures is that 90% of tooth decay is preventable through reducing sugar consumption, regular brushing with fluoride toothpaste and routine dental visits.
Prevention is always better than cure, otherwise we may be looking at a very gummy Generation Z.