Preventive Dental Care
In addition to an annual preventive medical care visit, it is also recommended that children see a dentist every 6 months beginning by age 1.1 The majority of children aged 1-17 years (78.4 percent) received at least one preventive dental visit in the past year.
The receipt of preventive dental care varied by age, health insurance status, and race and ethnicity. Of children aged 6-11 years, 89.5 percent received preventive dental care in the past year, as did 87.8 percent of those aged 12-17 years, compared to 53.5 percent of children aged 1-5 years.
Children without health insurance were less likely to receive preventive dental care than those with either public or private health insurance. While 82.4 percent of children with private health insurance and 76.2 percent of those with public insurance received preventive dental care, only 58.5 percent of uninsured children did so.
White children were most likely to have received a preventive dental visit (80.9 percent), followed by children of other races and Black children (78.4 and 78.3 percent, respectively). Hispanic children were least likely to have received a preventive dental care (71.5 percent). Nearly 78 percent of multiracial children received preventive dental care.
1 Hagan JF, Shaw JS, Duncan PM, eds. Bright Futures: Guidelines for Health Supervision of Infants, Children, and Adolescents. Third edition. Elk Grove Village, IL: American Academy of Pediatrics, 2008.