Wednesday, 13 May 2015


Virtually all American adults have tooth decay, and more than a quarter have cavities that have not been treated. By the time they hit 65, 96 percent of Americans have tooth decay. It is not what they are doing wrong. It is maybe what they can do better. A lot has to do with access to dentists. People without health insurance coverage for dental care, or living in areas where dentists are not common, are more likely to have tooth decay, and far more likely to go without fillings. About 19 percent of people 65 and over have no teeth at all. This rises to 26 percent of people 75 and older.

Tooth decay is the most common chronic disease in children in the U.S., five times as common as asthma. Caries, which comes from the Latin word for "rotten", is caused mostly by bacteria reacting with sugar in the mouth. They produce acid that leaches minerals from the teeth and weakens them. So it's an infectious disease — one that stays with people for life. Plus there is a genetic susceptibility to developing tooth decay. Fluoride helps slow this loss of minerals and greatly reduces rates of tooth decay.

Although most Americans have tooth decay, the situation is far improved from past generations. Toothbrushing, fluoridation and better dental care have all helped.

1 comment:

  1. CDC's new adult oral health statistics show fluoridation has failed.

    CDC claims fluoridation helps adults. But almost all American adults have
    tooth decay. Over 60% of 40- to 64-year-olds have lost one or
    more teeth.

    Disparities persist as 62% of Blacks have lost one or more teeth. This after 70 years
    of fluoridation reaching record numbers, some would say virtually all, Americans
    via the water or food supply.

    Americans are dentist-deficient and fluoride overdosed and disparities persist: "The prevalence of untreated dental caries
    was nearly twice as high for non-Hispanic black adults (42 percent) compared
    with non-Hispanic white (22 percent)...” Conspicuous by its absence was a
    breakdown by socio-economic-status. Dye and colleagues reported for the CDC in 2012 that for those 65
    and older low income seniors had more than twice as much tooth loss as higher
    incomed people.

    Up to 60% of adolescents have fluoride discolored teeth (fluorosis) Yet, 51% of them have tooth decay. Low-income folks have the most tooth decay and least ability to get dental care.

    The American Dental Association successfully lobbied to have dental care removed from Medicare. Over 100 Million Americans don’t have dental insurance. Many with dental insurance can’t afford dentists out of pocket expenses. It’s time to legalize dental therapists
    in all states. They will work in areas and mouths where dentists refuse to go.
    Unfortunately, the ADA and organized dentistry lobbies long and hard, with their
    pockets full of corporate cash, against dental therapists and in favor of
    fluoridation – one of the biggest public health blunders of all time. Too many
    dentists prefer to treat the water or and not the teeth of low income