The oral health facts below are from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which is a federal agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services headquartered in Atlanta. The CDC’s mission is centered on investigation and diagnoses of disease, preventing and controlling disease, and promoting environmental health and health education in the United States. The CDC provides health information to health care professionals and the public through the consolidation of disease-control data, health promotion, and public health programs.
According to the CDC:
- Without proper dental care, the risk for myriad health and social problems associated with poor dental hygiene such as missed school days and low self-esteem have a strong impact on a child’s learning environment and social skills.
- The daily reality for children with untreated oral disease includes persistent pain, embarrassment of damaged teeth, and distraction from play and learning. More than 51 million school hours are lost each year due to dental-related illness.
- Tooth decay (dental caries) affects children in the United States more than any other chronic infectious disease. Over 50% of children ages 5-9 have had at least one cavity or filling. By age 17, more than 7 percent of children have lost at least one permanent tooth to decay.
- Tooth decay remains one of the most common diseases of childhood – 5 times as common as asthma and 7 times as common as hay fever.
For more information on oral health related topics, visit http://www.cdc.gov/OralHealth/index.htm