The proportion of immigrant children and youth aged 12 to 19 years and 15 to 17 years who had consulted a dental professional in the last year (2009/2010) was lower than the proportion of Canadian- born children and youth.
There are a number of factors that decrease access – lower income/financial priorities, language barriers, past experiences, fear and history of inadequate care; and embarrassment about dental disease.1
1Pottie K, Greenaway C, Feightner J, et al. Evidence-based clinical guidelines for immigrants and refugees. CMAJ 2011;183:E824-925
Immigrant children and youth who are new to Canada are likely to see a medical doctor before seeking dental care. Since these newcomers to Canada often have unmet dental care needs, physicians and paediatricians should screen these youth and refer them to a dentist when needed.2
2Caring for Kids New to Canada. Oral Health Screening. http://www.kidsnewtocanada.ca/screening/oral-health