By Tony Edwards, DrBicuspid.com editor in chief

April 19, 2018 -- Which U.S. states are the best and the worst for children's dental and overall health? An April 18 report from a personal finance website has a surprising answer to which state is ranked the best for dental health for children.

WalletHub compared 30 key indicators of children's health across all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. West Virginia ranked the highest in dental health, while Vermont scored the highest in overall health and ninth in dental health.

After West Virginia, Maine was ranked the next best for dental health for children. Mississippi had the lowest scores, with Nevada just ahead (see infographic below).

To rank the states, WalletHub looked at nine oral health categories:

  • Share of children ages 1 to 17 with excellent or very good teeth
  • Share of children ages 0 to 17 with recent medical and dental checkups
  • Share of children ages 0 to 17 lacking access to fluoridated water
  • Presence of state oral health plan
  • Presence of school-based dental sealant programs
  • Dental treatment costs
  • Presence of state mandate for dental health screening
  • Share of dentists participating in Medicaid for child dental services
  • Dentists per capita

The report also considered children's physical activity, nutrition, health, access to care, and more.

For more information, the full report is available on the WalletHub website.

Best U.S. states for kids

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