Dentist backlog causing decay crisis in Northern Lincolnshire
A huge NHS backlog caused by the pandemic has caused dentist visits in Northern Lincolnshire to plumet.
Latest dental statistics reveal that the number of treatments performed in North East Lincolnshire by NHS desntists fell by 76 per cent.
In 2019/20 appointments sat at 243,146, but this number dropped drastically to 58,200 in 2020/21.
The number of treatments in North Lincolnshire fell by 71 per cent, to 122,829.
Covid measures and hesitancy from patients saw a drop in treatments including fillings, extractions and crowns.
In the past few years North East Licnolnshire has seen higher than average rates for tooth decay as more fillings are being performed.
Between 2018 and 2021, NHS dentists in North East Lincolnshire performed 137,625 fillings on adults and a further 29,766 on children.
This shows a rate of 49 fillings for every 100 adults and 47 for every 100 children in the area.
In North Lincolnshire, NHS dentists performed 53,124 fillings on adults and 16,188 on children, which sits below the national average.
The World Health Organisation reported that oral health services were among the most affected health services due to the pandemic.
Despite restrictions ending and practices reopening many have still avoided routine check-ups and will only visit the dentist if they are in extreme pain.
In a bid to clear the backlog created by the Covid pandemic, the government has announced it will spend £50 million to create an extra 350,000 extra NHS dental appointments over the next few months.
Dentists could be paid over a third more to work outside of their normal hours and to treat people in the early morning, evening, and at weekends.