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National Healthcare Disparities Report, 2005

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Prevention: Dental Care

Regular dental visits promote prevention, early diagnosis, and optimal treatment of craniofacial diseases and conditions,38 including prevention of dental caries. Healthy People 2010's goals for reductions in childhood dental caries include a decrease from 18% to 11% for children age 2-4 and from 61% to 51% for 15-year-olds.

Figure 4.28. Children ages 2-5 and 13-17 with untreated dental caries, by race/ethnicity (top) and income (bottom), 1999-2002

Figure 4.28. Children ages 2-5 and 13-17 with untreated dental caries, by race/ethnicity (top) and income (bottom), 1999-2002

[D] Select for Full Text Description.

Figure 4.28. Children ages 2-5 and 13-17 with untreated dental caries, by race/ethnicity (top) and income (bottom), 1999-2002

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Source: National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 1999-2002.

Reference population: Civilian noninstitutionalized population age 2-5 and 13-17.

Note: Children age 2-5 are examined for untreated dental caries in their primary teeth; children age 13-17 are examined for dental caries in their permanent teeth. These data were collected for Mexican Americans rather than all Hispanics.

  • In 1999-2002, the proportion of children age 2-5 with untreated dental caries in primary teeth was higher among non-Hispanic Black and Mexican American children compared with non-Hispanic White children and among poor, near poor, and middle income children compared with high income children (Figure 4.28).
  • The same disparities were observed in the proportion of children age 13-17 with untreated dental caries in permanent teeth.

To improve overall oral health, Healthy People 2010 also sets a goal of increasing the percentage of persons age 2 and older using the oral health system annually from 44% to 56%.

Figure 4.29. Children age 2-17 with a dental visit in the past year by race, ethnicity, and income, 2002

Figure 4.29. Children age 2-17 with a dental visit in the past year by race, ethnicity, and income, 2002

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Key: AI/AN = American Indian or Alaska Native.

Source: Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, 2002.

Reference population: Civilian noninstitutionalized population age 2-17.

Note: AI/ANs sampled in MEPS tend to be largely non-reservation, urban AI/ANs, which may not be representative of dental care for all AI/ANs in the United States.

  • The proportion of children with a dental visit in the past year was lower among Blacks and Asians compared with Whites; among Hispanics compared with non-Hispanic Whites; and among poor, near poor, and middle income children compared with high income children (Figure 4.29).

 

 

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