Celebrate Children's Dental Health in February!
"Brush and clean in between to build a healthy smile"
February is National Children's Dental Health Month. The Oral Health Program is raising awareness about the importance of oral health and want caregivers and children to practice good oral health habits.
A healthy mouth is an important part of overall health, and good oral health starts with your child's baby teeth. If baby teeth are kept cavity-free, then a child's adult teeth are more likely to be cavity-free.
Having healthy baby teeth:
- Allows your child to chew and eat well
- Helps your child to speak more clearly
- Guides adult teeth into place
- Helps to shape your baby's face
- Keeps down the amount of future dental costs
Tips for all children:
- See a dentist regularly
- Brush teeth for at least two minutes, two times a day
- Floss teeth daily
- Use fluoride (toothpaste, fluoride varnish, fluoridated water)
- Have dental sealants applied
- Choose healthy snacks like vegetables, cheese, and fruits (not fruit juice)
- Drink water, low-fat milk and milk products (soy milk)
Tips for teenagers:
- Wear a mouth guard while playing sports
- Avoid tobacco products, vaping, jeweling marijuana and drugs,
- Have a licensed professional perform oral piercings
- Get the HPV (human papilloma virus) vaccine to prevent mouth and throat cancer
- Limit drinking soda and energy drinks
Oral Health Program
The Oregon Health Authority's Oral Health Program is responsible for advancing evidence-based strategies to improve the oral health of all Oregonians. The Program is designed after the Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors' (ASTDD) model for state-based oral health programs. The Oral Health Program takes a comprehensive approach to address oral health issues across the lifespan through these activities:
- Creating systems and leadership capacity to incorporate oral health into overall health prevention strategies
- Ongoing data collection and maintenance of the Oregon Oral Health Surveillance System
- Policy development
- Delivery of school-based oral health programs
- Oral health promotion and education for the public
- Building partnerships and collaboration to support the integration of oral health
- Workforce development