Tooth decay levels revealed

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More than a third of young children in Calderdale are suffering from tooth decay, a survey has revealed.

Public Health England’s latest Oral Health Survey shows that 39.2 per cent of five-year-olds in Calderdale have preventable tooth decay.

Linda Riordan, Labour MP for Halifax, said: “These figures are a little bit worrying, but I am sure work is being done at a local level to address these inequalities.

“It is about education and ensuring young people attend their local dentist regularly.

“With the right policies, investment in the service and good education I am sure we will see a reduction in these figures very quickly.”

Calderdale Council’s director of Public Health, Paul Butcher, said: “We recognise that tooth decay in children is of concern, and this is reflected in our health priorities for children.

“However, the data presented is based on a very small sample.

“We commission South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust to improve dental health and reduce tooth decay in Calderdale.

“The team works primarily with those caring for and educating young people, providing information, programmes on prevention of dental disease and how to make the best use of dental services.”

Christopher Allen, chair of the Dental Public Health Committee, said: “Prevention and education are the key to tackling this disease with parents leading by example.

“It’s never too soon to take your toddler to the dentist – ideally no later than 18 months – dentists can treat tooth decay at the earliest stage.”