Working Together for CAVITY FREE KIDS

Did you know that dental caries is the single most common chronic childhood disease – it is five times more common than asthma and seven times more common than hay fever?  Poor oral health is related to poor performance in school, poor social relationships and less success in later life. Lack of dental care and insurance coverage is greatest for low and
moderate income families, with 20% of children suffering 84% of overall tooth
decay. Knowledge is a powerful tool in combating these problems.

What does this mean for our kids?

  • Nearly 1 in 3 preschoolers already have it.
  • Tooth decay causes unnecessary pain.
  • It causes unnecessary loss of school time—and kids in pain are distracted and it makes it hard to learn.
  • Nutrition suffers.
  • It can set kids up for a lifetime of troubles

GOOD NEWS……Community Partners of Orleans Community Health in Medina, New
York has been awarded a CHOMPERS (DENTAL HEALTH) grant supported from the Community Health Foundation of Western and Central NY. The Community Health Foundation is a non-profit private foundation the mission of which is to improve the health of health care of the people of Western and Central NY.

The objective of this funding is to bring dental care to kids and their families in the Early Head Start/ Head Start program. To date, all Early Head Start and Head Start Staff have received training provided by Community Partners Educator, Nicole Helsdon. The Cavity Free Kids curriculum and materials were made available to each Teaching Team across all program options and presented at the yearly pre-service training this program year. Many
of the support staff was also involved in this training as well.

This curriculum focuses on improving oral health knowledge of early child care providers, teachers, the children they serve and their families. The Teaching Teams have been busy incorporating activities that easily fit into their daily, weekly and monthly routines. We have seen activities being presented in many of the classrooms and the children engaged
in learning all about the importance of taking care of their teeth on a daily basis. Tooth-brushing has always been an integral part of our program, this curriculum has ENHANCED our knowledge, brings new idea’s and activities to all involved in this worthwhile effort to improve overall health for our children and families.

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