OTTAWA, Oct. 17, 2013 /CNW/ - Regular and early visits by infants and
toddlers to a dentist can help to identify and address the risk for
tooth decay that can lead to early childhood caries, says the Canadian
Dental Association (CDA).
"Tooth decay is preventable," says Dr. Peter Doig, President of CDA.
"Infants should visit the dentist by age one, and regularly thereafter.
These early visits can identify and address signs of tooth decay,
promote good oral health habits, and are an investment in lifelong
The Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) recently
investigated the extent of hospital-based day surgery for early
childhood caries in Canada. Among the findings, CIHI reported early childhood caries as the leading cause of day
surgeries for children ages one to five. The public cost of surgery for
these caries is $22 million per year for hospitalization alone.
CDA recommends this early assessment of infants by a dentist to
determine special risk, appropriate interventions and the required
frequency of future visits, within six months of the eruption of the
first tooth or by one year of age. In addition, parents and caregivers
can play an important role in preventing tooth decay by simple daily
mouth care and good feeding habits, which are discussed during the
baby's dental visit.
CDA recognizes the challenges related to ensuring all Canadians have
access to oral health care. While the vast majority of Canadians enjoy
excellent access to oral health care, ensuring access to care for those
who are in that minority remains a priority for the profession.
Developing paths to access is possible through partnerships among the
dental profession, other health professions, the federal and provincial
governments, provincial and municipal dental public health programs and
non-government community agencies. With this in mind, CDA continues to
explore ways in which organizations can work collaboratively to address
the issue of early childhood caries in Canada.
CDA also believes that fluoridated municipal drinking water remains one
of the most effective and scientifically proven methods of reducing
tooth decay and early childhood caries.
"Every Canadian should have access to optimal oral health," says Dr.
Doig. "A collaborative approach among those who have the capacity to
contribute to addressing the challenge of access to dental care will
ensure good oral and general health for all Canadians."
The Canadian Dental Association is the national voice for dentistry,
dedicated to the advancement and leadership of a unified profession and
to the promotion of optimal oral health, an essential component of
Image with caption: "Canadian Dental Association Logo (CNW Group/Canadian Dental Association)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20131017_C4953_PHOTO_EN_32205.jpg
SOURCE: Canadian Dental Association
For further information:
Canadian Dental Association