Man bites his hand off more snack boxes in the same year as he bites off his tongue, according to the latest figures.
The latest annual data from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) shows that in 2016, there were more than 100,000 bite-markings reported across Australia, with almost half of those being made by men.
While the majority of those were made by children aged 0-5, many more adults were bitten in the first five years of the 21st century.
“We are in a really dangerous place where there are so many bite-marks out there,” AIHW’s chief executive, Dr Robert Williams, said.
“It’s really important that we are getting people up to speed with what is actually causing these bite-marked teeth.”
Dr Williams said that while the rate of bite-related deaths was lower in the last two decades, the trend was still “unprecedented”.
“We’ve got about 100,00 more people dying each year because of these bites than the year before,” he said.
Mr Williams said the biggest threat to public health from this trend was a lack of awareness about the importance of wearing a mouthguard.
“People are just not paying attention to the safety of their mouth and the safety and effectiveness of the mouthguard,” he told AAP.
“In Australia we have a very, very good dental hygiene regime.”
Dr Howard, from the Queensland Department of Health, said that in the past five years, there has been a dramatic decrease in the number of people bitten by pets.
“I think the trend of the past 15 years is that people are not eating out much, that they are staying home and working in the home,” he explained.
“So the trend is probably going to go back up and I think we’ll see some of that trend reversed as the population continues to grow.”
Dr Harris said that the number and severity of bite wounds and the frequency of tooth infections were still high in the country, but that it was important to understand what was causing these problems.
“There is a real danger of the tooth becoming infected, of the enamel, of not having enough time to get the tooth cleaned and of not being able to properly care for the tooth,” she said.
Topics:health,dental-health,health-administration,community-and-society,community,tobacco,health,people,australia,united-statesFirst posted March 07, 2021 19:04:33Contact Michelle O’ConnellMore stories from Queensland