Children's preventive dental visits 

Yearly preventive dental visits by:

Yearly preventive dental visits can prevent tooth decay

Examples of preventive dental care include dental cleanings, pit and fissure sealants and fluoride varnish. The American Dental Association, Academy of General Dentistry and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommend at least one preventive dental visit each year, starting by the child’s first birthday or when the first tooth appears, whichever comes first.

We analyzed the prevalence of children’s preventive dental visits by sex, age group, race and ethnicity and special healthcare needs of the child. We also looked at household poverty, primary language spoken, parent and guardian education, health insurance and household poverty as possible factors associated with children’s past year preventive dental visits. Below we report on factors in Minnesota that are statistically significant.


8 in 10 Minnesota children have at least one yearly preventive dental visit

8 out of every 10
Minnesota children (1 to 17 years)

 

(77.9%, 95% CI = 74.3 to 81.2; n = 1,351)

Had at least one preventive dental visit
2016

In 2016, 78% of Minnesota children and 79% of U.S. children had at least one preventive dental visit within the past year. Children’s past year preventive dental visit rates have been similar since this data was collected in 2007.


Children's past year preventive dental visit by age, 2016

 

Source: National Survey of Children's Health.

 

Children (1 to 17 years) with at least one past year dental visit

1 to 5 years

6 to 11 years

12 to 17 years

United States

Percent

56.4%

88.2%

87.1%

 

95% Confidence Interval

54.6 to 58.3

86.7 to 89.6

85.9 to 88.3

 

Number (sample size)

7,360

13,717

18,569

 

Estimated population

11,119,875

21,674,663

21,270,294

Minnesota

Percent

56.6%

86.5%

88.1%

 

95% Confidence Interval

49.4 to 63.5

80.4 to 90.9

82.1 to 92.3

 

Number (sample size)

210

350

491

 

Estimated population

204,653

373,198

352,053

 

Data is based on a survey of parent or guardian reported measures of non-institutionalized children (i.e., children not in jail, prison or hospital setting). Total sample size: U.S. = 50,212 and Minnesota = 1,351. Unstable rate: use caution when interpreting rates based on a sample size less than 50 or an estimate with a 95% confidence interval width exceeding 20 percentage points or 1.2 times the estimate. Percentages are weighted to population characteristics. See About the National Survey of Children’s Health data for more information.

 

In 2016, U.S. and Minnesota children under age 6 were 1.5 times less likely to have had a preventive dental visit within the past year compared to children aged 6 to 17 years.

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend at least one preventive dental visit each year, starting by the child’s first birthday, when the first tooth appears, or whichever comes first. Preventive visits are important to maintain healthy gums and teeth, prevent dental disease and identify any treatment needs.