Why Is This Important?Regular dental visits are important in the prevention, early detection, and treatment of oral and craniofacial diseases and conditions for all ages. Adults need regular professional care to avoid tooth loss, the need for complex restorative treatment, and even systemic health problems. Even people without teeth need to be monitored regularly for oral health which may be affected by systemic conditions, medications, prosthetic devices, and exposure to tobacco. Infrequent use of dental services has been associated with poor oral health among adults.
Percentage of Adults Who Reported a Dental Visit in the Past Year, Utah and U.S., 1997-2002, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2016
- Utah Data: Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, Office of Public Health Assessment, Utah Department of Health
- U.S. Data: Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), Division of Behavioral Surveillance, CDC Office of Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Laboratory Services
Data NotesAge adjusted to U.S. 2000 population. U.S. data are the average of all states and the District of Columbia; they do not include U.S. territories. (Beginning in 2002 this question is only asked in even years.)
The data in this graph include estimates from the old landline-only methodology, and from the new methodology that includes both landline and cell phone respondent interviews along with a new weighting methodology called iterative proportional fitting, or raking. The new methodology utilizes additional demographic information (such as education, race, and marital status) in the weighting procedure. Both of these methodology changes were implemented to account for an increased number of U.S. households without landline phones and an under-representation of certain demographic groups that were not well-represented in the sample. More details about these changes can be found at: [https://ibis.health.utah.gov/pdf/opha/resource/brfss/RakingImpact2011.pdf].
Risk FactorsGum infections have been called the "sixth complication of diabetes," because people with diabetes are more likely to have periodontal disease.
How Are We Doing?In 2016, 73.0% of Utah adults reported visiting a dentist or dental clinic in the past year (age-adjusted rate). This is up about 4% compared to the previous 6 years, but in general it has varied little since 1995 when the question was first asked. Utah adults with higher incomes and more education are more likely to report a dental visit in the past year than those with lower incomes and less education. There is little difference in this percentage among age groups in Utah.
What Is Being Done?The Utah Department of Health Oral Health Program's current priorities include promoting fluoride and dental sealants, preventing tooth decay in young children, and encouraging annual dental visits for both children and adults.
Healthy People Objective: Increase the proportion of children, adolescents, and adults who used the oral health care system in the past yearU.S. Target: 49.0 percent
Date Indicator Content Last Updated: 10/04/2018
- by Income Category, Utah, 2016
- by Education, Utah, 2016
- Utah and U.S., 1997-2002, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2016
- by Age, Utah, 2016
- by Local Health District, Utah, 2016
- by Dental Insurance Status, Utah, 2001 (SEE NOTES)