THE OCCURRENCE of serious dental disease in Slovakia has doubled. Experts believe that those with less money are struggling to pay for expensive dental treatment, while some who are better off do not have time to go to the dentist.
“In the past we treated an abscess or oedema in 12-15 percent of all disease cases; nowadays we treat them in 30 percent of cases,” Andrej Jenča, senior expert for maxillofacial surgery (surgery to treat diseases, injuries and defects in the face, jaws and the hard and soft tissues of the mouth and maxillofacial, i.e. jaws and face, region) at the Health Ministry, as quoted by the Sme daily earlier this year.
According to data from the National Health Information Centre (NCZI), more than 200,000 dental surgical interventions were carried out in 2010.
According to Jenča, this number has increased over the last 12-15 years. Jenča sees “dead teeth” or untreated cavities behind the development, adding that such inflammatory diseases can lead to death if inflammation of the tooth leads to inflammation of the eyes or brain membranes. In terms of the level of inflammatory disease caused by bad teeth, Slovakia has regressed to the 1970s, Jenča argued.
Jenča also ascribed the increasing number of serious dental problems to the cost of dental treatment. As many treatments are not covered by health insurance and patients must therefore pay for them directly, some people find they cannot afford them. But it is not only poor people who have problems with their teeth. Jenča said he has also treated a businessman who said he simply did not have time to get his teeth fixed.
22. Oct 2012 at 0:00 | Compiled by Spectator staff