Sunday, December 14, 2008

Toothlessness: Nature or Nurture?

Nearly one-fourth of the children in the United States didn't see the dentist last year. Now, I hate going to the dentist, and I find it tough to care about other people's children (I'm a jerk like that), but according to the University of South Carolina, it's a public health problem.

I guess that they have a point. For one thing, these kids are going to grow up to be toothless adults. And Halitosis ain't pretty.

Still, I learned some things from this study. Did you know that the United States can designate Dental Health Professional Shortage Areas? It's a fact! Of course, I don't see the federal government training any new dentists to improve the situation, but at least they're keeping an eye on it.

Also interesting? Vermont led the nation in children receiving dental care. Actually, by "interesting," I meant to say "boring." Vermont, call me when you decide to start living on the edge. Until then, you have fun with your cheese and your dentists, but don't think for a second that you're hardcore.

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The header image is adapted from a photo taken by Bill McChesney and used under a creative commons license.
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