February is Children’s Dental Health Month. The first Children’s Dental Health Day was observed in 1949. It has since evolved from a day to a week, then the entire month of February. Like all “observance” or “remembrance” days, it seems odd that we only remember children’s oral health one month out of the year.
Of course, that is not the case. We should all be paying attention to our kids’ oral health every day. It is hard, though. For instance, teachers often reward kids for a variety of things in the classroom. They often pay for the rewards out of their own pockets. And kids love candy. It is a no-brainer for the teacher to buy a big bag of candy.
Children’s Dental Health Month gives us all an opportunity to be more thoughtful with what we allow our kids to eat and drink. We can even take this this month to observe our kid’s oral health at home. Think outside the box or wrapper when choosing snacks at the grocery store. As a teacher, make this a month of no sugar in the classroom. Maybe plan lessons around healthy snacks. Ask the kids to help you come up with ideas for rewards, snacks, and beverages that contain low or no sugar.
Better yet, call your dentist or dental hygienist. Ask them if they can come to your classroom, daycare, after-school program, or event where children gather. We are all trained to provide oral health education to groups. We always bring gifts, like toothbrushes. 😉
All across America dental communities will gather for a day we call Give Kids a Smile Day. Dentist, dental hygienists, dental assistants, and others give their time to provide dental and dental hygiene care for children at no cost. If you know of children who need these free services, you can find a local event by calling your local dentist or dental society.
Every child deserves a healthy smile. Together we can help make that happen.
Do you have a child with special needs or disability, attend a qualifying school, or live in an area where there are not enough dentists?
Then find an RDHAP in your area to serve them! Click HERE!