Every February, the American Dental Association (ADA) sponsors National Children’s Dental Health Month to help raise awareness about the importance of oral health, particularly in children. And your dentist Columbia SC joins in their efforts.
Why is year-round attention to children’s dental hygiene so important?
Although preventable, tooth decay continues to be the most common chronic disease found in children. Over 40 percent of children between the ages of 2 to 11 have had a cavity in their primary teeth, and more than 60 percent of 16- to 19-year-olds have had a cavity in their permanent teeth. Although overall rates of tooth decay have decreased over the past 40 years, incidents of decay have actually increased in preschool age children in recent years.
The good news from your dentist Columbia is that there are effective preventive measures that can protect a child’s teeth. Good oral hygiene practices such as thorough brushing with toothpaste containing flouride can help keep children from getting cavities. In addition, dental sealants and community water fluoridation can also help prevent tooth decay.
This year’s NCDHM campaign: “Join the Super Smile Team!”
Whether you’re a member of a dental team, a teacher or a parent, the ADA has free online resources that can help you with oral health presentations, ideas for the classroom and coloring and activity sheets that can be used as handouts. They also have booklets, videos and other materials available for purchase here: ADA Catalog.
The ADA’s Give Kids A Smile® program improves the oral health of large numbers of children in need. Give Kids A Smile activities also highlight the ongoing challenges that disadvantaged families face in finding proper dental care. A child’s baby teeth are as important as the permanent adult teeth.
- Primary teeth typically begin to appear when a baby is between the ages of 6 – 12 months.
- Primary teeth help children chew better and speak properly.
- Primary teeth hold space in the jaws for permanent teeth that are developing under the gums.
The ADA recommends that your dentist Columbia SC examines a child within six months of the appearance of the first tooth and no later than the first birthday.
Developing good habits at an early age and scheduling regular visits with your dentist Columbia SC helps children get a good start on a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums. If your child is ready for a dental check up, call our office today to schedule an appointment.
It’s never too soon to establish good dental habits!