Public Health England Report on Tooth Decay

Survey results from Public Health England published on Friday 20 September recognise the importance of improving dental health in children under 5 years of age. The study ‘National Dental Epidemiology Programme for England, oral health survey of five-year-old children 2012’ finds that, despite an overall improvement in the number of children free of tooth decay, over 27% of five year olds have tooth decay.

This survey undertaken in 2012 is the second national survey, the first of which was undertaken in 2008. Overall tooth decay in five year olds has reduced from 30.9% in 2008 to 27.9% in 2012.

The Infant & Toddler Forum (ITF) support Public Health England in their efforts to raise awareness of good oral health in children. Judy More, a Paediatric Dietitian from London and ITF Forum member said: “It’s good news that national rates of tooth decay in 5 year olds have slightly improved, but there are still areas where one in two children have decayed teeth. Healthcare professionals, parents and carers still need advice and support to ensure that decay levels continue to fall.”

The ITF have been working with the British Dental Health Foundation, and provide free resources to help prevent tooth decay including a Factsheet for healthcare professionals and a Guidance and Tips sheet for parents and carers.

The factsheet is available for download from: ITF Protecting toddlers from tooth decay Factsheet

The guidance and tips sheet is available from: ITF Protecting toddlers from tooth decay G&T

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Further Reading

  • By Melanie Pilcher and Dr. Gillian Harris Establishing bedtime routines for toddlers and young children
  • By Dr. Gillian Harris, Honorary Senior Lecturer in Applied Developmental Psychology at the University of Birmingham and ITF member Most parents will struggle at some point to get their toddlers to eat certain foods. Is toddler food refusal a sign of an eating disorder. or is it merely a phase? In the run up to Eating Disorder Awareness Week, Gill Harris provides practical advice to help parents tackle fussy eating in toddlers.  
  • By Lucy Upton, on behalf of the Infant and Toddler Forum On behalf of the members of the Infant and Toddler Forum, I am proud to announce the launch of a new infant feeding educational programme, which includes practical resources for frontline healthcare professionals (HCPs) working with parents and infants.