Dental Health: Children

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 10th December 2020.

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Photo of Lord Colwyn Lord Colwyn Conservative

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to bring forward proposals (1) to improve children’s oral health, and (2) to reduce the number of children admitted to hospital for dental extractions in England.

Photo of Lord Colwyn Lord Colwyn Conservative

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to extend the provision of supervised tooth brushing programmes for children; and what assessment they have made of the effectiveness of those programmes on reducing oral health inequalities in children in England.

Photo of Lord Bethell Lord Bethell The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

As set out in the green paper Advancing our health; Prevention in the 2020s, the Government intends to seek views on the merits of expanding the current provision to reach more children in pre-school and primary school settings in England. Water fluoridation is also clinically proven to improve oral health particularly for children. The green paper set out a commitment to reduce the barriers to expanding water fluoridation and this is being carefully considered.

There has been no recent national evaluation of the effectiveness of the existing local authority led individual schemes that promote toothbrushing. Public Health England regularly review available evidence on the effectiveness of measures to promote oral health including supervised toothbrushing. This includes evidence from schemes in England and those in other parts of the United Kingdom including the well-established scheme in Scotland.

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