Dozens of admissions for tooth extractions on children in Nottinghamshire
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While the number of procedures across England was down on pre-Covid pandemic levels, the British Dental Association said the figures will likely end up exceeding pre-pandemic highs, as millions struggle to access dental care.
Across England, there were 29,981 admissions in the year to March, 3,833 fewer than between 2019-20.
Eddie Crouch, BDA chairman, said although the national figures are down on pre-pandemic highs, “it is not for want of demand”.
In Nottinghamshire, most extraction procedures, 15, were conducted on children aged five -nine, which accounted for 43 per cent of the admissions.
Across England, the rate for this age group was almost 60 per cent.
Children under five and those aged 15-17 required the fewest procedures, with fewer than eight extractions conducted on each of the two age groups.
Mr Crouch said: “Tooth decay is a wholly preventable disease and remains the number one reason for hospital admissions among young children.
“With millions struggling to access care, and deep oral health inequalities set to widen, ministers cannot keep sitting by the side lines.”
A Department of Health and Social Care spokesman said: “The number of children seen by NHS dentists rose by 43.6 per cent last year.
“We are working to improve access to NHS dental care – investing more than £3 billion a year into dentistry – and we are also taking preventative measures to improve children’s oral health, such as expanding water fluoridation schemes which can significantly reduce the number of children experiencing tooth decay. Further reforms are planned for this year.”