PUNE: A new study has revealed that at least eight out of 10 children in India suffer from oral health issues, underscoring the need for immediate action. As per a survey conducted by Kantar IMRB for Colgate-Palmolive (India) Limited wherein 2,030 adults and 1,080 children from diverse socio-economic backgrounds from Delhi, Chandigarh, Lucknow, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Pune, Hyderabad, Chennai, Bengaluru, Kolkata, Bhubaneswar and Patna participated, some of the major oral health problems found in children include visible plaque accumulation, white spots on teeth, visible caries, gum inflammation, bad breath and gum bleeding.
The study highlights increasing oral health issues in children across the country. East India has reported 89 per cent oral health issues in children, West India has 88 per cent, North India has reported 85 per cent and South India has 64 per cent dental problems in children. Major cities in India like Mumbai has recorded 90 pc oral health incidents, Kolkata has 93 pc, Hyderabad has 82 pc, Delhi has 79 pc, Chennai has 60 pc and Bengaluru has reported 46 pc cases.
Moreover, the survey pointed out that 8 out of 10 children who consume sweetened products daily suffer from oral health issues more. Around 44 per cent of children needed major dental treatments such as restoration, root canal or an extraction.
Dr Meenakshi Kher, Member of the Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry (ISPPD), said that most parents do not know that milk teeth in a child need to be cared for from the time they erupt in the baby’s mouth.
“These teeth contribute significantly to the toddler’s overall growth, allowing the child to chew nutritious food while encouraging adequate development of the jaws. This lays the foundation for strong permanent teeth and a healthy smile. The increasing cases of cavities and oral health problems in children have its roots in poor care of milk teeth,” said Dr Kher.
Are you neglecting your child’s oral health?
- There was a significant difference between the actual dental health condition of children and the state of their oral health as believed by their parents. This evident disparity is mostly driven by low awareness about how crucial oral health is to their children’s overall wellness.
- At least eight out of 10 parents surveyed believed that their children have healthy teeth, while a dental examination found that around 80 per cent of those children actually suffer from at least one oral health problem.
- This gap between reality and parents’ perception of their children’s oral health is most prominent in Kolkata (92 pc), followed by Mumbai (88 pc) and Hyderabad (80 pc).
- More than 70 pc of children surveyed do not brush their teeth twice a day and more than 60 pc of them have not been taken to a dentist in the past year.