Statistics released today by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show promise in the fight against dental caries (cavities). When compared with published data from previous surveys, the new data show an increase in the percentage of children who receive treatment when that disease does occur.
The preliminary numbers are encouraging, but they reflect only the first two years of what will be a longer and more comprehensive survey, and we look forward to seeing a final report. But even if the full study confirms a positive trend, the fact that dental decay still afflicts so many U.S. children is simply unacceptable.
While treating dental disease is critical, prevention is the ultimate answer. The dental profession is taking action to prevent and, ultimately, end untreated dental disease in America through Action for Dental Health (ADH). ADH is a nationwide, community-based movement to provide care now to people already suffering with dental disease, strengthen and expand the public-private safety net, and bring dental health education and disease prevention into underserved communities.
American Dental Association