Tooth Decay is More Common in Kids Who Are Exposed to Dysfunction
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Tooth Decay is More Common in Kids Who Are Exposed to Dysfunction

A sad young girl sitting on the stairs

Children who grow up in dysfunctional environments are more likely to suffer from tooth decay, dental cavities, and other dental diseases, according to a study published in the Journal of Public Health Dentistry. Additionally, kids who experience more than 4 dysfunctional childhood events before the age of 18 are less likely to visit the dentist regularly for preventative care.

The children involved in this study were between the ages of 6 and 17. Sociodemographic information, adverse childhood experiences, and dental health histories were all taken as part of the study.

Dysfunctional Childhood Events

Dysfunctional childhood events are listed as the following:

  • Economic hardship
  • Parental separation or divorce
  • Witnessing household violence
  • Racial or ethnic mistreatment
  • Living with a parent or caregiver suffering from mental illness
  • Living with a parent or caregiver suffering from a substance abuse problem
  • Parental death

Around 88% of kids have had a preventative visit to the dentist within the last year, but children who had experienced 4 or more of the above events were less likely to have had these visits than children who did not. In fact, 27% of the children with 4 or more traumas suffered from advanced tooth decay.

Now that we know the impact that childhood trauma can have on dental health, it’s important for parents, grandparents, caregivers, pediatricians, and dental professionals to look out for signs of these problems in at-risk children.

To schedule an appointment for your child to receive an orthodontic evaluation, please contact Lockett Orthodontics here in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Posted on Mar 9, 2020

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