Recent studies of preventative dental care indicate that children may not be receiving the routine care they need resulting in decay and disease as they age. In particular, it appears that there is a significantly lower rate of preventative visits among lower income families.
In a study of pediatric dental patients in
The difference in percentages appears to be related to reimbursement rates for covered services. The gap between what insurance programs cover and what is charged is too great for patients and families to pay. Additionally, the reimbursement rates are so low that many providers are unwilling to accept the coverage at all.
Also noted in this study, by kindergarten, over 50% of children have experienced symptoms of tooth decay. Of those, more than 25% of the cases are left untreated.