Some children are having to wait until they’re 12 to have their first check-up from the dentist.
The Irish Dental Association says the delays are because of a staffing crisis in the Public Dental Service.
Under the HSE scheme, children should get their first free check up in second class.
But the Association says the system is facing collapse unless an extra 150 dentists are recruited.
Chief Executive Fintan Hourihan says the Government’s approach is very short sighted.