An apple a day is the right dental way for kids in Milton Keynes

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Fewer five year olds in Milton Keynes are going to the dentist with tooth decay problems - thanks in part to work by Central and North West London’s Oral Health Improvement Team.

Tooth decay rates for this age group show that 21.5% of 5 years olds are affected by decay compared to 25% in 2012.

The CNWL team has played its part in this achievement, which has run a number of successful programmes during this time including the Smile Award programme and the Healthy Early Years Award.

Both these programmes recognise the positive work Early Years settings do to encourage and support good oral health for the under-fives and have encouraged families and young children to make positive behaviour changes for the health of their teeth.

This work includes providing tooth friendly foods and drinks, reducing the use of bottles and dummies in children over one, signposting to local NHS dentists and teaching children to brush their teeth twice a day.

“It’s true what people say about eating an apple a day keeping the dentist away!” said Oral Health Improvement Manager, Lucie Daleki.

“We’ve seen families drinking more water, eating more fruits and vegetables, providing ‘me sized’ food portions and making healthier lunch boxes, while children are learning to love their teeth

“The Oral Health Team has been a large part of this effort as we’ve worked really hard to engage with and support families with our programmes.

“This latest data showing a reduction in decay rates for our five year olds is fantastic and the Milton Keynes Oral Health Team is pleased to have been part of this achievement in health improvement for this age group.”