Objective: To examine dental service utilization and costs before and after the introduction of fluoride gel application for preschool children in Taiwan. Methods: This study used claim data for 101,314 preschool children aged ≤5 years. The study sample was divided into two groups: children who received fluoride gel application in dental clinics in 2004 as the study group, with children who visited dental clinics in 2004 but did not receive fluoride gel applications as our control group. A difference-in-difference methodology was employed to compare change in the number of dental-visits and relative dental expenditures before and after fluoride gel application for the study group alongside change over the same time period for the control group. Results: We found that after fluoride gel application, the total number of dental-visits, caries treatments and pulpitis treatments all increased at slower rates for the study group compared to the control group. Similar patterns were found on dental expenditures. Conclusion: Fluoride gel application is associated with a slower rate of growth in the number of visits for the treatment of dental disease and lower dental care expenditures for preschool children.
ASJC Scopus subject areas