It’s that time of the year again, it’s National Children’s Health Dental Month! The American Dental Association (on short, ADA) has always been an ethically driven, science based, and patient centered association. The not-for-profit ADA has been founded back in the year 1859. Representing over 161,000 dentist members, today this is the largest dental organization in the US. The ADA has become a top information source covering oral health for both patients and dentists. The ADA is focusing its activities on the dental health improvement for the general public as well as to its members. The Association strives to become the nation’s top dental health leader and to help all its members succeed.
The 161,000 ADA members come from all 50 American states, Puerto Rico and the Columbia District. The organization is run and managed by its members. The ADA aims to contribute to the advancement of the dental profession on many levels, -local, state, and nationwide. Members of the national organization are also members in one of the 545 local and 53 state dental societies.
More than 300 dental health products such as chewing gum, mouth rinses, dental floss, denture adherents, toothpastes, and toothbrushes carry the ADA Seal of Acceptance. This is a symbol universally recognized by consumers as representing effectiveness and safety. The ADA also has a philanthropic arm that provides advocates for children’s oral health, scholarships for dental students, and supplies disaster relief to those members in need.
If you wonder what Children’s Dental Health Month means, currently the ADA is the sponsor for this annual event month in February. The event is brought to you by the Crest + Oral B and the ADA. This is a national month of observance of dental health, designed to bring together thousands of healthcare providers, dedicated dental professionals, and educators. The Children’s National Oral Health Month promotes the benefits of oral health to teachers, caregivers, children, their caregivers, and many others. The month long event aims to raise awareness about the importance of dental health for children.
Year around as well as February’s special celebration is important in raising attention to children’s oral health because tooth decay has become the most common chronic disease in children. And this despite the fact that tooth decay is an almost entirely preventable disease.
There are effective and safe measures designed to protect children’s teeth and prevent teeth decay. A key role is playing various hygiene practices such as dental sealants, water fluoridation, and brushing by using fluoride toothpaste. These simple measures can protect children from teeth cavities. You can take advantage of the free NIDCR health education materials whether you are a parent, teacher, health professional.
It’s time to focus on you’re the oral health of your children. While that is an important task for all year round, the ADA sponsors annually the oral health month in order to spread the message about the important of teaching your children oral health habits.
Here are some ways you can encourage your kids to follow some dental hygiene rules:
- You can transform brushing teeth in a fun activity for your kids. For instance, you may set up a calendar where they can put a sticker each day in order to show all the days when they brushed twice a day. At the end of the month you can reward them for completing each day’s goal of brushing.
- Another important dental hygiene activity is flossing. This should become a habit for your children at an early age. Ensure that they never skip a day of flossing their teeth. Brushing and flossing are the key measures that help preserving good dental health. Make all possible that your kids avoid oral problems. According to statistics, each school year students lose due to dental related illnesses around 51 million school hours. As much as one out of every four children are starting a kindergarten class without ever consulted a dentist.
- You need to find ways to make the trip to the dentist become a more fun experience. Teach your kids to not fear but rather celebrate healthy choices. Ensure you find ways to positively frame the visit to the dentist. Regular cleanings at the dentist along with regularly brushing and flossing will prevent tooth decay through childhood. Studies have shown that dental health also impacts overall health and its benefits are carried on into adulthood. Preserving healthy teeth as a child and as an adult helps lowering the risk of life threatening conditions such as stroke, diabetes, and heart disease.