Study: Preventive dental care for children lacking

A study of more than 90 million claims by Delta Dental found that even insured children are not getting the proper level of preventive dental care.

The study found that more than one-third of children ages 6 to 18 are at higher risk for tooth decay, according to Delta Dental.

The study's findings include the following:

  • More than 70% of children ages 6 to 18 are not receiving two fluoride treatments a year.
  • More than 60% of children ages 6 to 9 did not receive sealants on their first molars.
  • More than 80% of children ages 11 to 15 did not receive sealants on their second molars.

Additionally, the study found that nearly 2 million of Delta Dental's adult enrollees are at higher risk for periodontal disease, yet half did not receive two or more dental cleanings per year.

Children at higher risk for caries, including children who have had recent fillings, should receive at least two fluoride treatments per year, along with sealants on their first and second permanent molars, according to the ADA.

Delta Dental has an online tool to help people assess their caries risk and learn about oral health. MyDentalScore can be found by clicking here.

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