Children learn best when they are healthy, and yet one of the most overlooked health factor is oral health. More than 51 million school hours are lost each year because of dental related illness. Untreated tooth decay causes pain and infections that may lead to problems that affect eating, speaking, playing, and learning. A study done by the American Journal of Public Health in 2011 concluded that children with poorer oral health status were more likely to experience dental pain, miss school, and perform poorly in school. These findings suggest that improving children’s oral health status may be a vehicle to enhancing their educational experience.Â Back to School with A Healthy Smile is a program created by Town Center Dental of Lagrange to provide parents of elementary school children with knowledge of their child’s dental health, as well as provide professional care to children without dental homes.
Schedule a back to school dental visit
Seeing a dentist twice a year during the school-age years is vital because this is a time of great change in the mouth, with kids losing baby teeth and getting in their permanent teeth. Tooth decay is still the most common chronic childhood disease and, left untreated, it can impair a child’s ability to eat, speak, sleep and learn. However, studies show more than 60 percent of school-age children do not see a dentist annually. “Simple preventive checkups twice a year can head off childhood decay and help you and your child learn how to protect their teeth throughout the year,” says Dr. Paes. To make your appointment with us, call 1-845-751-9117.
Establish daily brushing habits with your children
Children should brush at least twice a day. To encourage children to brush after every meal, let them pick out their own travel toothbrush and toothpaste to take to school. “There are many child-friendly products that help encourage younger children to brush,” says Dr. Paes, “Make sure your child’s toothpaste contains fluoride and the toothbrush is soft-bristled.”
Make good nutrition a top priority
National studies show that only one in five school-age children eat the recommended five daily servings of fruits and vegetables greatly increasing their risk of cavities. In addition, only one in five children meet even the minimum standards for calcium consumption. Take charge of your child’s health this school year by packing healthy lunches. “Don’t forget after-school snacks,” says Dr. Paes. “Many school children go straight to sporting practices after school and turn to sugary foods and drinks from a vending machine when they don’t have any other option, which are disastrous to children’s oral health.” Bite-sized carrots, fruits, nuts and bottled water are much better after-school snack options and give children the fuel they need to excel in physical activity.
We encourage parents to join our program and teach their kids how to maintain their oral health. To kick start your child’s school year off right, we’re offering a Free Consultation and Exams and we’ll also teach them how to maintain their pearly whites. To learn more about our Back to School with a Healthy Smile Program, contact us at 845-486-4572, or email us.
Town Center Dental of Lagrange, Poughkeepsie, and Fishkill NY
1110 Route 55, Suite 107
Lagrangeville, NY 12540
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