Closing the gap on Indigenous oral health

More than 400 indigenous children under the age of nine were admitted to Queensland hospitals last financial year with severe tooth decay and this year Oral Health for aboriginal and Torres Strait island communities a key focus for National Close the Gap Day – Today.

The State’s Chief Dental Officer, Dr Mark Brown says Queensland Health was putting a focus on oral health awareness for National Close the Gap Day this year, after identifying the need for greater education and awareness in the community.

“We know there is more work to be done to close the gap in oral health between indigenous and non-indigenous Queenslanders – with five and six-year- old indigenous children almost twice as likely to experience decay in their baby teeth.”

“Queensland Health recently conducted market research which surveyed parents of children aged four to 12, to gain a better understanding of their attitudes and behaviourstowards oral health and hygiene.”

He says there’s several strategies indigenous families need to look at.