The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that nearly 20 percent of children have untreated cavities and more than 4 in 10 children show decay in baby teeth.
Children in underserved communities suffer twice the tooth decay and pain compared to their peers, but are only half as likely to visit a dentist, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Research also shows dental problems impact a child’s ability to concentrate and learn, causing children to miss an estimated 52 million hours of school and about 12.5 million days of restricted activity every year.
During our life, we’ll have 2 sets of teeth: baby or primary teeth (20), and permanent or secondary teeth (32). Baby teeth first appear between 6 and 8 months and all 20 are generally in place by the age of 3. As soon as a child has their first tooth, is when they should have their first dental visit.
Most of our 32 permanent teeth begin growing around age 6 and are in place between 12 and 14. Molars and wisdom teeth begin growing later; molars at around 12 years and wisdom teeth starting at age 17. Not everyone gets wisdom teeth and quite often they cause problems anyway and need to be removed.