Author Affiliations: Department of Dentistry, Ohio State University, and College of Dentistry, Nationwide Children's Hospital, Columbus, Ohio.
Ever since the publication of Oral Health in America: A Report of the Surgeon General1 brought the epidemic of early childhood caries (ECC) into focus, those concerned with the health of children have sought ways to understand and address this most common of childhood infections. The commitment of dental, medical, and policy professionals as well as other child health care advocates was redoubled with the release of data about 5 years ago suggesting a worsening picture of oral health for poor and minority children.2 Since the surgeon general's report, we have gained a better understanding of the effects of ECC-related pain,3 its functional consequences on learning,4 and even its association with the toxic stresses in the life course of many poor children.5
Casamassimo PS. Nothing Is Free in Life—Not Even Prevention!. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2012;166(10):965-966. doi:10.1001/archpediatrics.2012.1141