Did you know students in America miss out on 51 million hours of school every year because of oral health problems? In fact, oral health problems can lead to difficulty eating, sleeping, smiling and even paying attention in school! Despite the fact that tooth decay is almost completely preventable, it’s actually the most common chronic disease in children!
According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, more than 50% of children will be affected by tooth decay before the age of five! For every dollar spent on preventative care such as routine check-ups and cleanings, between $8-$50 are saved on restorative and emergency dental work!
This is exactly why the American Dental Association (ADA) celebrates February as National Children’s Dental Health Month. The ADA and Dental Depot encourages parents to help teach their kids good oral health habits now to establish healthy lifestyles for their future.
Dental Depot celebrates the month-long observance every year by sending Smiley O’Riley to various schools and childcare centers all across the state to teach kids about developing good oral health habits! Smiley’s free 30-minute shows children how to take good care of their mouths.
- brush twice daily for two minutes at a time with fluoride toothpaste,
- floss daily,
- eat a well-balanced diet
- and see their dentist twice a year for check-ups!
For more tips on how to take care of your children’s oral health stay tuned for our next two blogs that cover how children’s teeth develop and how mouth guards can protect their teeth during sports!
For fun posters and activities, visit the ADA’s National Children’s Dental Health Month program page!
National Children’s Dental Health Month started as a one-day event in Cleveland, Ohio in 1941. The American Dental Association (ADA) adopted the day in 1949 and the popularity of the event grew until it was made a month-long awareness program in 1981.