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
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 […]
Arlene K.
Dr Gorman and staff are very thorough and sincerely concerned about patient dental health.
Sonia G.
I am very satisfied with the service I receive. Always courteous and conscientious of my dental care.
Ray H.
I love my dental hygenist Matt he is always very nice and very good at making you feel at ease while getting a cleaning. Dr. Goreman is by far my favorite dentist I’ve ever had. He is […]
Brooke G.
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.
I’m happy with Dr. Gorman and the staff.
Susan R.
I love them. They are the best. My husband and I have been with them for 15 years. You are guaranteed great service.
Debbie I.
Primary reason is Matt (dental hygienist), who is always very thorough, very detail-oriented and a pleasant person to be around. Second reason is Dr. Gorman and his staff who have always been very […]
Michael S.
I have been seeing Dr. Oppenheim for years and he is the reason
James V.
Very professional and personable service.
Maria E.
Very pleasant experience. I come here regularly and am never disappointed. Hygienist Elena was excellent today.
Nicholas L.
I trust my dentist completely.
Barry M.
I was taken on time and I was out 1 hr later (which was the length of time I was told it would take)
Pearl Z.
The staff and Dr Oppenheimer are great. He pulled my teeth and I don’t even know it’s gone.
Verethia W.
The services are always stellar.
Kody T.
The only dentist office I’ve been to in my life. Everyone is so great and helpful. Very pleasant place.
Loren I.
I was in a great deal of pain and was able to be squeezed in imedialty! I have terrible anxiety about having any type of dental work done however, Dr. Gorman always takes the time to explain to me […]
Ashley H.
Excellent care. No waiting.
Sarah B.
Dr. Gorman is a very good dentist.
Elyse S.
Everyone is so nice. The hygienist I had (Matt) was very patient with me, and cleaned my teeth gently. He was very personable. Dr. Gorman is always friendly, knows I don’t care to come to […]
Michele S.
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