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VITALS

September 22, 1997|KATHLEEN DOHENY

* Hours spent brushing teeth, lifetime average: 911

* Percent of Americans who wet their toothbrush before applying paste: 47

* Percent of children who use too much toothpaste: 73

* Percent of U.S. households with dental floss: 90

* Percent of Americans who admit they never floss: 21

* Most popular toothbrush color: blue

* Average number of dental visits, lifetime: 142

* Number of toothpastes with the American Dental Assn.'s Seal of Acceptance: 65

* Percent of U.S. children without access to fluoridated water: 40

* Estimated number of dental injuries prevented each year in youth football players who wear mouth guards: 200,000

* Percent of U.S. adults who think they have gum disease: 4.

* Percent who do: 75

* Percent of toothless U.S. adults in the 1970s: 30

* Today: 15

Sources: American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry; American Dental Assn.; Academy of General Dentistry; Johnson & Johnson Consumer Products Inc.; Oral-B Laboratories.

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