Tooth decay is Australia's second-most costly diet-related disease in Australia and the nation's most common health problem, according to new figures published last month by the Australian Dental Association.
Dr Peter Aldritt, oral health committee chair at the Australian Dental Association (ADA), asserted that as tooth decay is five times more common in children than asthma – and largely preventable – it is essential that Australians have the knowledge they need to adopt a healthy diet and good dental care habits.
He explained: "Preventing tooth decay can be as simple as controlling consumption of sugary or acidic food and drinks between meals, drinking soft drinks through a straw to minimise the acid exposure to your teeth and eating calcium rich foods like cheese and yogurt to help neutralise acids and protect your teeth."
Dr Aldritt made his remarks as the ADA announced the theme of this year's Dental Health Week, which will take place between August 6 and 12.
This year, the ADA is focusing its message on tooth decay. This, the organisation asserts, should not be accepted or expected – but instead prevented with regular brushing, flossing and trips to the dentist, as well as simple dietary changes.
Some private health insurance policies can cover the costs of dental treatments – you may wish to compare the different levels of cover available to find one that suits you.