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.

Read What Our Patients Say
Patient Reviews
The dental tech was so knowledgeable, and proficient at cleaning my teeth, that I almost fell asleep!
Tracy T.
Valley Dental Associates has a great staff….they have always been friendly and accommodating to my needs. My first time there was a dental emergency, (I did have an actual first visit appointment […]
Arlene K.
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.
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.
The staff is very friendly and efficient. I like how the doctors and dental assistants explain each step of the procedures along the way.
Alicia H.
I have been going to this particular dental office practically all my life. My kids and husband also receive dental care here. I trust them with my and my family’s teeth.
Lauren C.
Friendly courtesous staff. Appointment are always on time. When you call to scheduled they give you fast appointments.
Jarie K.
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.
The dental hygienist gave me a thorough cleaning and irrigation of my teeth and also made excellent recommendations.
Paul L.
I like my Dentist, very Happy atmosphere
Gail K.
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.
Friendly staff. Wait time is short. Staff is knowledgeable and very courteous.
Jarie K.
The best atmosphere and service!
Yovnda T.
I just love the atmosphere there and all the friendly staff.
Marquis S.
First time receiving care from that dentist. I’m impressed. . . he was awesome!
Wyona C.
Clean and professional atmosphere
Caesar C.
I was extremely satisfied with the customer service and the appointment availability. The staff were very professional and friendly. The office was clean and welcoming.
Lisa C.
Friendly, do good work, I like the people who treat me
Roger K.
It was the most thourough dental examination I have ever had. Everyone has a great bedside manner.
Michelle C.
responded promptly and effectively to a dental need
Joel L.
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Office Hours
  • Monday 8:30 AM - 7:00 PM
  • Tuesday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
  • Wednesday 8:30 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Thursday 8:30 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Friday 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM
  • Saturday Closed
  • Sunday Closed
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  • Phone: (443) 898-1240
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