Dental health a major concern in Slough, as rates of childhood decay soar

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Dental health has been identified as a major concern in Slough after figures revealed that the number of children with oral health problems is almost double the national average.

Recently, the council met to discuss the most recent statistics, which show that children in the town have worse oral health than in most other parts of the country. Research suggests that 41.5 percent of children in Slough have at least one missing or filled tooth. This figure is much higher than the national average of 23.3 percent and the average for the South East region, which is just 16.4 percent.

At the meeting, council members admitted that rates of decay are much higher than they should be and outlined a number of measures, which have been introduced to try and improve standards. During half-term, a number of dental practices in the town are hosting open days to encourage parents to find out more about NHS dental services and increase registration rates. Council workers have also visited community and children’s centres across the area to talk to children and parents about dental health, access to services and healthy eating in a bid to ensure children see a dentist on a regular basis and to raise awareness of the importance of diet. Research suggests that sugar consumption is a major problem, with a large proportion of kids consuming far more than the recommended intake.

Council workers have also teamed up with dental professionals to try and improve oral health education in schools and to support teachers to enable them to talk to children about protecting their teeth and introduce measures, such as supervised teeth cleaning in schools and nurseries.

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