Staggering Australian Dental Statistics
Tooth decay is fast becoming Australia’s biggest health problem. In fact, there are 11 million newly decayed teeth developing each year in this country!
What’s more, in almost all cases, these decaying teeth are entirely preventable; and yet we’re not working to prevent the problem. Less than half of the Australian population over 18 years of age have regular check-ups with the same dental provider. Prevention is always better than a cure, and regular visits to the dentist can prevent the emergence of tooth decay and serious dental problems. The team at Mullumbimby Dental Centre provide comprehensive dental solutions for patients in the Northern Rivers area, from Byron Bay and Ocean Shores, to Brunswick Heads and Murwillumbah.
Not only do the adult population of Australia suffer from poor dental health, so do the children. A study conducted by the Australian Government found that 61% of 9-year-olds in Australia have suffered decay in their baby teeth. What you may not know is that the health of your child’s baby teeth directly impact the health of their future adult teeth. They act as placeholders for the adult teeth, they maintain healthy gum tissue and they affect the development of the jawbone that will eventually anchor their adult teeth. As a general rule, it is suggested that you arrange a dental visit for your child once their baby teeth first erupt.
Australians value good oral health
The Australian Dental Association conducted a study and found that an overwhelming majority
of Australians (83%) said that bad breath and decayed teeth were the biggest ‘turn-off’ on a first date. Despite the overarching value placed upon good oral health, the study also found that only half of the adult population of Australia regularly visit the dentist.
Dental health and the economy
A study conducted in 2007 by Leeder & Russell estimated that 1 million lost work days per year are a result of dental health problems. Dental carries are also the second most costly diet-related disease in Australia; which means they have an economic impact comparable to that of heart disease and diabetes! Although it seems so simple, if Australians maintained better oral hygiene routines, by brushing and flossing daily, we could possibly see a dramatic decrease in dental health related costs.
How to take care of your teeth
When it comes to your teeth, prevention is always the best course of action. The Australian Dental Association recommends a visit to the dentist once every six months for a check-up and a professional scale and clean. This helps to pinpoint any areas you might be missing in your daily oral hygiene routine, as well as remove any build-up of plaque that can cause periodontal (gum) disease and tooth decay.
In addition to regular dental check-ups, you should maintain your oral health at home by brushing your teeth twice a day; this helps to upset any plaque causing bacteria that has settled on your teeth during the day. You should also floss your teeth once a day to remove any build-up that has occurred in between teeth. If you don’t floss your teeth, you miss cleaning approximately 35% of your tooth’s surfaces.
If it has been some time since your last visit to the dentist, the team at Mullumbimby Dental Centre can help. Contact us to arrange an appointment for a check-up and clean, or if you are suffering from dental discomfort or pain, call us on 02 6684 2644 and we will arrange a consultation for you as soon as possible.