S.Yorks Tooth Extraction Capital for Young Children

26 February 2016, 15:31 | Updated: 26 February 2016, 15:36

Thousands of children - from toddlers to those aged 10 - have been admitted to hospital to have decayed teeth removed since 2011.

In 2014/15 alone, more than 33,000 cases were for youngsters needing teeth taking out.

The places with the highest episodes of care for extractions in 2014/15 were:

Sheffield: 1,140

Doncaster: 833

Rotherham: 798

Liverpool: 598

Bristol: 593

Ealing: 575

Manchester: 564

Kirklees: 546

Southwark: 486

Bolton: 478

Dr Nigel Carter, chief executive of the British Dental Health Foundation said: "It is truly inexcusable in the modern day to see such staggering amount of children visiting hospital to have teeth extracted due to tooth decay, especially as it is entirely preventable.

"Having to undergo such treatment at a young age could be setting children up for a lifetime of poor health.

"Two years ago, when we were first faced with elevated cases of childhood extractions, we called for extreme reforms to diet - the sugar tax being one such proposal.

"Despite growing unrest, and with Government set to reject the introduction of a sugar tax, here we are again facing a huge crisis in children's dental health in the UK, and with each passing year the situation is worsening.''

He added: "We need to make sure that children are supervised brushing their teeth twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste. This is a very basic message but is often something that there is a failure to enforce effectively and children are not doing properly.

"There is also a continuing need for us as a population to greater understand the effect of diet on oral health. An increase in consumption of sugary foods and drinks is one of the fundamental reasons for dental decay in children.

"Constant snacking on sugary foods and drinks can cause extreme damage to children's teeth, these type of foods and drinks should be kept to mealtimes only. This will not only improve oral health, but also general health too.

"Finally, we have to all ensure that children are visiting a dentist regularly, from as soon as their first teeth start to appear.''