The Pew Center on the States in one of its studies has revealed that at least one in five U. S. children go without annual dental care as most states lack key policies to ensure access to cost-saving preventive treatments.
Six states received an "A" grade from the non-profit policy analysis group for their dental health policies, even though children in those states faced problems accessing care.
"Americans will be spending $106 Billion on dental care this year", said Shelly Gehshan, Director of the Pew Children's Dental Campaign.
From among the eight policy solutions, the states were graded on School-based dental sealant programs, Fluoridated water and Medicaid payments.
Medicaid, a joint State-Federal Program serves low-income patients.
"That is a huge issue", American Dental Association President Ron Tankersley said.
In Rhode Island, the number of dentists treating Medicaid children increased from 27 to 217, after the State increased payments and made other program changes.
South Carolina, ranked best in the study, has in place seven of the eight dental policies.
"The policies have definitely impacted children's dental health. But we still have more children than we would like that are in school with untreated tooth decay", said Christine Veschusio, South Carolina's Oral Health Director.