Oral health has become as essential as your physical and mental health. It’s related to many illnesses people experience, dictating their recovery from such diseases. However, the United States is facing a severe problem in oral health and one that it’s struggling to solve.
When solving oral health, one must look into the problems surrounding it. In this article, you will be looking at the overall state of oral health. You will also be learning how the government and various NGOs are doing their best to improve it.
Problems with Oral Health
Oral health is related to all sorts of physical problems that many people see as unrelated. For example, a pregnant woman with poor oral health might have problems nourishing her child because of the pain she experiences in her gums. This is just one example of how your oral health can affect youe daily life and others.
About one-third of the adult population in the United States is experiencing tooth decay. In addition, almost half have gum disease, and many more have untreated cavities. All of these problems are reducing the overall oral health score of the States, placing it in a lower grade than others.
In addition to this, the country has one of the highest rates of obesity and diabetes. These two illnesses are related to poor oral health and various oral diseases. Diabetes increases the chances of periodontal disease, the same as obesity.
This analysis shows that oral health is connected to every aspect of your lives. It’s not as simple as solving the problem. It’s all about solving multiple issues on multiple fronts. It’s also about solving the problem as early as childhood.
School-based Dental Sealant Programs
The US government has seen the potential of dealing with the country’s poor oral health at its core: during childhood.
People can vividly remember their love for sweets and all sorts of unhealthy things for their teeth as children. Cravings can lead to teeth deterioration and, eventually, cavities. Unfortunately, however, not many children have access to appropriate dental care. This is why a staggering amount of children in the United States have poor oral health.
Thankfully, the US government has implemented school-based dental sealant programs. These programs give free or discounted dental sealants to children. Dental sealants have been known to reduce cavities by about 80 percent during the first two years, making them effective in dealing with poor oral health among American children.
Sadly, this program only reaches one in three children. Moreover, it sometimes can’t reach children in the low socioeconomic bracket. Nonetheless, this government program is a success in many states.
Free Tooth Extraction
A decaying tooth can lead to multiple dental health problems, mainly when it stays in the mouth for long. It can lead to gum disease and also affect surrounding teeth. This is why tooth extraction is such an essential dental operation.
Tooth extractions are pretty cheap when compared to other dental operations out there. However, wisdom teeth removal, a more specialized form of tooth extraction, is more expensive but crucial in dental health. In some states, the government provides free tooth extraction for those who can’t afford it. Moreover, this free tooth extraction program goes into the rotation, visiting various cities with citizens who need a decaying tooth extracted.
Community Water Fluoridation
Water is an essential substance needed in your daily life. Without water, people will not survive. This is why the US government has decided that water is the prime vessel in improving people’s oral health.
Fluoridation is the process of adding a healthy amount of fluoride into a water source. This can be done for various reasons, but mostly it’s done for preventing tooth cavities among the given population. Studies have shown that water consumption with fluoride can reduce the chances of tooth cavities among children by 25 percent. When combined with dental sealants, it can completely negate any possibility of tooth cavity during the first two years.
Community water fluoridation is one of the best oral health-related programs that the government implemented. It improves the overall state of oral health in the country while also helping families save money to protect their oral health.
These programs, alongside many others, are shaping the United States’ overall oral health today. However, these programs aren’t enough. People still have one of the highest rates for cavities and other oral health issues. Hopefully, new government programs can help with these cavities and even improve the current state of your oral health.