N.H. Still Struggling To Meet Kids' Oral Hygiene Needs

Jun 23, 2015

Credit Liz West via Flickr CC / https://flic.kr/p/8DoUxw

More than one-third of New Hampshire children experience one of the most preventable childhood diseases: tooth decay.

According to a new report from UNH’s Carsey School, access to oral healthcare is all about geographical and financial barriers. The problem is worst in Coos County, where more than half of third graders had tooth decay in 2014.

And while all of New Hampshire’s pediatric dentists accept Medicaid, the reports notes there may only be about 40 practicing in the state.

New Hampshire scores comparatively well on oral hygiene relative to other states, and the state is improving access. But the report underscores that national comparisons are only relative: adults and children across the state struggle to access preventative dental care, and they often wind up in the ermgency room for tooth pain.