The American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) recognizes the importance of oral and dental health, and the impact it has on individual and community wellness. Compromised oral health is associated with cardiovascular disease, diabetes, premature birth, and low-birth weight. The AAFP encourages its members to be aware of the serious disparities surrounding oral health, and to advocate for and engage in strategies that address the underlying social determinants of oral health, including advocating for sufficient water fluoridation.
The AAFP recommends primary care physicians prescribe oral fluoride supplementation starting at six months for children whose water supply is deficient in fluoride, as well as apply fluoride varnish to the primary teeth of all infants and children starting at the age of primary tooth eruption.
The AAFP recommends physician education in oral condition screening and management, as well as the consequences of poor oral hygiene on overall health. The AAFP encourages collaboration of family physicians with dental health practitioners to provide comprehensive medical care. (April 2018 BOD)