Happy New Year!!

I know it’s almost the end of January but this is the first Blog of the Year and I think it’s important to start with well wishes!! I hope everyone had a safe and happy holiday season and is well rested and ready for 2014!

On the subject of the New Year, do you resolve to change anything? The Abbot government has a “New Year’s Resolution” in the form of the “Child Dental Benefits Schedule” which commenced on, (you guessed it!)  January 1, 2014.1 The scheme includes fee coverage for fillings, hygiene, fissure sealants, dental exams, root canals, radiographs and extractions.1 The allowance is capped at $1000 per child in a 2 year period. It is also means tested, so you will need to contact Medicare on 132 011 to confirm if your child is eligible.1 The services have to be provided in a general practice setting, not in the hospital to count towards the scheme.

One of the most common questions we are asked here about children is, “When should I bring them in to see the dentist?” Our answer is always, “As soon as they have teeth—or sooner if you would like!” We want to encourage healthy dental experiences in children and this starts with good experiences at the Dentist from an early age.

The “Child Dental Benefits Schedule” replaces the “Medicare Teen Dental Plan”.2 We would also like to stress that children who have a health primary dentition (baby or milk teeth) tend to have a healthier adult dentition—which typically translates to fewer restored teeth and less dental work overall.3 So, thank you and Happy New Year to you, too, Mr. Abbott! We look forward to meeting all of the wonderful children that belong to our lovely patients!!

For further information:

1)      http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/content/childdental

2)      http://www.health.gov.au/dental

3)      http://www.babyteeth.com.au/oral-hygene/introduction.html