The Faculty of Dental Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons of England has set out the following recommendations to address the poor state of children’s oral health. 2

  • Improve children’s access to NHS dental services so they can visit a dentist regularly for preventive advice and receive early diagnosis and prompt treatment for any problems identified.
  • Address the relative shortage of specialist paediatric dentistry services in some parts of the country, to ensure all children with advanced tooth decay have timely access to specialists with appropriate skills and facilities.
  • Collect statistics on children’s attendance at an NHS dentist in the previous 12 months (rather than 24 months as currently), in line with NICE guidance on dental recall; PHE should also consider a public campaign to stress the importance of children seeing a dentist.
  • Educate parents and children about the risks of tooth decay and the importance of good oral health and prevention; the national government is urged to invest in a national oral health programme to drive improvements in children’s oral health in England, as these have proved successful in Scotland and Wales.

References

  1. “The state of children’s oral health in England,” Royal College of Surgeons: Faculty of Dental Surgery, 2015.
  2. “The state of children’s oral health in England,” Royal College of Surgeons: Faculty of Dental Surgery, 2015.