Health care experts say a recent outbreak of a new bacterial infection is raising serious concerns about the effectiveness of oral health programs in the United States.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed the new coronavirus last week, but it is not known how many people have been infected and what their symptoms are.
While dental care is essential for preventing cavities, experts say that the recent outbreak highlights how vulnerable the dental system has become to a bacterial infection.
The problem with oral health in the U.S. has been poorly studied and the data on how effective oral health services are in preventing cavies is scant, said Andrew Chery, a professor of preventive medicine at Duke University.
Chery was the lead author of a 2015 study of dental health services in the Washington, D.C., area.
That report found that dental care was not as effective as it could be.
In recent years, more Americans have had cavities than ever before, and that number is expected to rise.
While there are fewer cases of oral cancer than ever, there are more than 100,000 new cases of tooth decay each year in the country, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
“Dental health care is not always as effective,” Chery said.
“I think there are some indications that there is some concern that oral health care might be underutilized, that we may not be performing as well as we should.”
While the number of dental patients receiving dental care has been declining in the past few years, there is still a huge demand for care in the region, Chery added.
In the past two decades, the number, quality and frequency of visits to dentist offices has dramatically increased in the D.D.C. area, with more than one-third of residents receiving at least one visit per month.
But despite the uptick in visits, dental care providers are still struggling to meet that demand, according a 2016 study by the American Dental Association.
Chen, who works in dental care for the Dutchess County Health Department in New York, said that the outbreak in New Jersey has also been a problem in the state, too.
The Dutchie state is home to several hospitals and clinics that treat more than 500,000 people a year, according the association.
While many of those patients are also dentists, Chen said, dental offices in New Brunswick, one of the state’s largest cities, are filled with dentists and dental assistants.
It’s not clear how many patients have died or been hospitalized from the new infections, Chen noted.
There is also no way to know if there has been a spike in dental infections in other parts of the country.
A 2015 study by researchers at Columbia University, which analyzed dental records in 26 U.K. dental schools, found that more than half of the patients who developed oral infections in England had already been diagnosed with cavities.
Cheshire, who has worked in dentistry for 25 years, said dental care services in D.O.D.-covered counties have long been underutilised, especially in New England.
But because of rising dental costs, dental providers in New Hampshire and other areas are not able to keep up with demand.
In New Jersey, where the state spends nearly $1 billion per year on dental care, it’s hard to see how a dentist could keep up.
A spokeswoman for the state Department of Health and Senior Services said the state has no data to suggest a spike.
The New Jersey Department of Labor and Industry said it could not immediately say how many workers have been exposed to the new virus in Newland County, but said it would not provide any additional information until the outbreak is under control.
The state is also notifying dental employers that their workers may need to wear face masks when visiting a dentist.
A spokesman for the New Jersey Hospital Association, which represents state-licensed dental offices, said in an email that “a number of dentists have already tested positive” for the new strain of the coronaviruses.
In the state of New York in the last two years, at least 16 dental offices have been reported as being at risk for a new coronovirus, according that state’s Department of Consumer Affairs.
In a statement issued Friday, New York Gov.
Andrew Cuomo called the new cases in the New York City area a “tragedy.”
Cuomo said the governors office is monitoring the situation closely, and he is “looking forward to a thorough investigation” and the “safe return of all affected New Yorkers to their homes as soon as possible.”