A £1.5 million pound action plan to improve children’s oral health in Oldham, Rochdale, Salford and Bolton has been launched.
The investment aims to reduce both the number of children aged five and under affected by tooth decay and those needing a general anaesthetic to have their teeth taken out due to decay.
Nearly all the cash will be spent on prevention work such as supervised tooth-brushing programmes, toothbrush and toothpaste packs distributed via health visitors and dental practices and increased prevention messages.
The announcement is being made by Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership, the body overseeing the devolution of the £6 billion health and care budget in the city region.
The wide-ranging three-year programme aims to:
Increase the number of children under the age of five accessing dental care, with a focus on high-risk groups and under ones
Expand supervised tooth brushing in nurseries, schools and other early-years settings
Extend the provision of preventative advice to families including through training those working with children to share these messages.
In Greater Manchester, approximately 36% of children aged five have tooth decay compared with 25% across England.
In 2015/6 treatment of preventable tooth decay in children cost Greater Manchester circa £20 million.
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Greater Manchester schools and nurseries set to improve dental care.
Br Dent J 223, 749 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.bdj.2017.1012