Almost half of teenagers in the U.K. have caries, and many are afraid to smile or laugh because of the condition of their teeth, according to a newly released report on the findings of a 2013 dental health survey.
The report, which summarizes the results of the 2013 Children's Dental Health (CDH) survey, was published by the U.K.'s Health and Social Care Information Centre. The survey looked at the quality of children's dental health in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland.
The survey found that 46% of 15-year-olds and 34% of 12-year-olds had obvious decay in permanent teeth, which was down from 56% and 43%, respectively, since the survey was last conducted in 2003. In addition, 35% of 12-year-olds and 28% of 15-year-olds were embarrassed to smile or laugh because of the condition of their teeth.
Other results included the following:
- 31% of 5-year-olds and 46% of 8-year-olds had obvious decay in their primary teeth.
- Children from lower-income families were more likely to have oral disease than those of the same age from less-deprived families.
- 38% of children showed no obvious decay.
- 90% of all the surveyed children visited the dentist for regular checkups.
A recent survey by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 58% of 12- to 19-year-olds had experienced caries, while 15% of this age group had untreated caries.