Survey of dentists finds gaelic football is the sport which results in most dental injuries for children
Hurling and rugby in joint second place
Vast majority of dentists say fees have remained the same or are lower than 2010
Friday 31st January 2014. Gaelic football is the sport which causes the most dental injuries for children, followed by hurling and rugby, according to a new survey of dentists.
Forty five per cent of respondents said gaelic caused the most dental injuries, with hurling and rugby in joint second on 33%.
IDA figures indicate Ireland has one of the highest rates of sport-related oral injuries in the EU, with one third of all adult dental injuries being sports-related.
Gum shields became mandatory for juveniles playing gaelic last year and only became compulsory for adult players on the first of January.
In something of a surprise cycling was next on 21% ahead of both soccer and hockey on 18.5%.
Over 130 dentists from all over the country took part in the survey. IDA President Dr. Sean Malone said the findings showed the importance of wearing a gum shield or helmet when partaking in sports.
“We welcomed the GAA’s gum shield rule when it was introduced but it’s important that it is now strictly enforced. The rule in every club for juveniles and adults should be the same - ‘no gum shield, no game’. Given these figures the IDA believes the gum shield rule should also apply to hurling and we hope the GAA will introduce a similar measure for that sport in the near future” Dr Malone said.
The findings of the survey are to be discussed at the IDA’s Annual Practice Management Seminar which takes place at the Dublin Convention Centre this weekend. Over 150 hundred dentists will attend the meeting which will be addressed by a number of business experts and the Chief Dental Officer Dr Dympna Kavanagh.
The survey also found that 94% of dentists had either reduced or frozen their fees for the most common dental treatments since January 2010.
Dr Sean Malone said 8 out of 10 adults are entitled to a free oral exam each year but only a quarter are availing of the service. He urged adults to avail of the exam.
“The fact that fees have remained the same or have been reduced over the last four years will be welcomed by patients. Over 40% of dentists in our survey expect dental attendance to improve in the coming year and we want people to avail of their entitlements and for non-attenders to get back into the habit of having a regular check up” Dr Malone said.
The IDA has been running a national radio advertisement campaign with the aim of encouraging people to go for regular dental check ups.