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Around 30 percent of Germans do not go to the dentist
According to the experts, the fact that 30 percent of Germans do not go to the dentist within a year is also a reason to think about fundamental changes in the system. "If almost every third person remains without contact with the dentist, the question arises: is it individual fear of the dentist or do the growing private shares frighten off?" Emphasized Barmer GEK Vice President Dr. Rolf-Ulrich Schlenker.
An average of two visits to the dentist per year throughout Germany According to the "Zahnreport 2011", the Germans are not quite as precise with regular visits to the dentist. Around a third of Germans do not go to the dentist once a year. According to the information from the Barmer GEK, an average of 2.15 dentist contacts per year apply to every German citizen, but the distribution of visits to the dentist varies depending on age group and gender, explains study author Professor Thomas Schäfer from the Hanoverian Institute for Social Medicine, Epidemiology and Health System Research (ISEG ). For example, “young men in the age group of 20 to under 25-year-olds (...) are particularly afraid of dentists.” According to the data from the Barmer GEK, only 55 percent of them were at the dentist in the year under review, while the proportion among women was the same Age group was 67 percent. The "Zahnreport 2011" is based on the data from more than eight million insured persons of the statutory health insurance companies Barmer and GEK (now Barmer GEK), which have been merged since 2010.
East-West divide in dentist visits and prophylaxis The east-west difference in dentist visits was also striking, the study author of the "Zahnreport 2011" explained: According to this, Saxony and Thuringia have an average of 2.4 dentist contacts per year and inhabitant, while in Rhineland-Palatinate had an average of 1.9 dentist visits per year and only 1.8 in Saarland. According to the "Zahnreport 2011", the East German federal states are also in front when it comes to claiming prophylaxis services. Professor Thomas Schäfer from ISEG attributes this clear east-west divide to the higher density of dentists in the east and to "early childhood socialization in day-care centers and after-school care centers in the former GDR". Apparently, special emphasis is placed on participating in prophylaxis programs and similar measures. Nevertheless, around six percent of all fillings in Germany were milk teeth, which illustrates the relatively wide spread of caries in children.
Expansion of group prophylaxis required Therefore, the Barmer GEK is committed to expanding group prophylaxis in kindergartens and schools, and intensive care for preschool children should also be promoted, said study author Professor Thomas Schäfer. In particular, children from socially disadvantaged families should be taken into account, since "the environment of origin (...) must not determine dental health", emphasized Schäfer and added: "Prophylaxis is also a piece of social compensation." The Barmer GEK Vice President, Dr. Rolf-Ulrich Schlenker, underlined the importance of preventive care through group prophylaxis in kindergartens and schools. At the presentation of the "Zahnreport 2011" on Tuesday in Berlin, Schlenker explained that group prophylaxis can contribute to a greater awareness of dental health and this also applies to children, "whose parents cannot take care of them in the way that would be desirable".
Spread of caries in young children cause for concern In addition, the spread of caries in young children is certainly a cause for concern, dentists at the University Hospital Dresden told “Welt Online”. According to its own surveys, the situation is particularly alarming, especially in social hotspots, because up to 35 percent of three-year-olds are already affected, said the University Hospital Dresden. According to the experts, the deciding factor for the wide spread of caries is, among other things, frequent sucking of sweet drinks, but also breastfeeding in the evening after the first year of life, when the first milk teeth are already getting through. "Of course the parents know that sweets are bad for the teeth", Gabriele Viergutz, specialist dentist for pediatric dentistry told "Welt Online", but many people are not aware that many drinks and even breast milk can damage the teeth. Dentists therefore advise you to go to the dentist with the child early after the eruption of the milk teeth and to brush the child's teeth once a day from the first milk tooth. From the second birthday, teeth brushing is announced twice a day. In addition, children should never or rarely receive sweet drinks and never at night.
Almost 30 percent of Germans have tooth decay. Other interesting results of the “Zahnreport 2011” are, for example, that 28.9 percent of the population had at least one filling in 2009 and a good nine percent of Germans had to have at least one tooth extracted. In addition, about half of the total population takes preventive treatment at least once a year, which puts Germany in the middle in an international comparison, the experts explained when presenting the "Zahnreport 2011" (fp)
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