Valley Dental Associates
9199 Reisterstown Road, Suite 206B, Owings Mills, MD 21117

Despite improvements, many states falling short on pediatric dental care

Despite improvements, many states falling short on pediatric dental care

More than 16 million U.S. youngsters don’t have access to regular dental care, although many states have improved dentistry services in recent years, according to a report from the Pew Charitable Trust’s Center on the States.

The Pew study found that 27 states were graded as A or B, while 23 states and the District of Columbia earned only a C or lower grade for their dental services in 2011. However, 22 states improved their grades compared to the previous year’s report and six states – Arkansas, Delaware, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Utah and West Virginia – increased their ratings by at least two grades.

Maryland was one of only seven states to receive an A rating from Pew in the report entitled, “The State of Children’s Dental Health: Making Coverage Matter,” which detailed public policies that cover both insured and soon-to-be insured children.

States that raised the quality of their services did so mainly by reimbursing dentists for preventative care, expanding water fluoridation in local communities and increasing the number of Medicaid-enrolled children who have access to a dentist office or clinic.

The news source found that many children don’t receive the dental healthcare they need because of a shortage of dentists who are willing to serve low-income patients with Medicaid as their insurer. Pew recommends that officials increase payment levels to dentists for Medicaid patients because the federal insurance program has not kept pace with their fees.

Prevention costs less
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that tooth decay is the most common chronic disease of childhood. Eighteen percent of children ages 2 to 4 have experienced tooth decay, 52 percent of those ages 6 to 8 are affected and 61 percent of 15-year-olds have tooth decay.

Included in the Pew criteria that determined a state’s rating for dentist services was the availability of dental sealants, which are clear plastic coatings applied to children’s molars to block tooth decay caused by trapped food and bacteria. Sealants have been found to prevent decay at a much lower cost than restorative fillings once the decay leads to a cavity.

Pew contends that dental problems can impact youngsters’ overall well-being and education in part because underserved children tend to miss more school days than those with regular dental services. In addition, the center’s research showed that more children receive medical insurance to cover ailments than health plans that cover basic dental care.

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Patient Reviews
I had my first appointment here last week, based on a recommendation. I was so pleased with the visit. The staff was friendly and professional, and I was taken back almost immediately. Dr. Gorman […]
Regina R.
Friendly courtesous staff. Appointment are always on time. When you call to scheduled they give you fast appointments.
Jarie K.
Very pleasant experience. I come here regularly and am never disappointed. Hygienist Elena was excellent today.
Nicholas L.
Dr. Challagulla is AWESOME!!! I had my first root canal and it was better than expected. A day later and I feel no pain. Thank you guys!!!!
Tyesha H.
I thought this particular treatment was going to be painful during and after but that wasn’t the case. It was a good experience (for the dentist) , and even a better experience afterwards when […]
Christeen H.
Just went for a hygienist appointment. I had the best visit! No cavities and my teeth feel great. The staff is very friendly and helpful.
Joanne P.
Very good hygienest
Gary G.
Awesome! Dr. Gorman is a true professional and very detailed in his work.
Nick H.
I’ve been using this office since I was a young child and now I bring my own young child there with me. They are great with me and even better with my son. He loves it there. They also participate […]
James C.
I really liked the atmosphere along with how knowledgeable everyone was at this dental office.
Avril B.
Matthew is the best dental hygienist ever!
Kimberly K.
The only dentist office I’ve been to in my life. Everyone is so great and helpful. Very pleasant place.
Loren I.
I’ve been coming to Dr. Gorman for over 20 years and have always received excellent care. He listens and takes my best interest of my visits.
Yvonne W.
High level of competence of Dr. Gorman and staff; caring manner and professional interactions.
Leslie G.
I trust my dentist completely.
Barry M.
Clean friendly.Dr. Gorman has been there for a long time. I trust him.
April S.
The staff and Dr Oppenheimer are great. He pulled my teeth and I don’t even know it’s gone.
Verethia W.
Great experience today. Very professional and courteous staff. Front desk receptionist Cheryl and Hygentist Jennifer were the best. Can’t leave out Dr. “G” he has a way of putting a smile on […]
Karen W.
Excellent care. No waiting.
Sarah B.
Mathew is terrific
Mark B.
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  • Tuesday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
  • Wednesday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
  • Thursday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
  • Friday 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
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