The Greenwich Department of Health Dental Health Division will celebrate National Children’s Dental Health Month by holding a free after school program at the Greenwich Boys and Girls Club on Wednesday, March 4, at 3:30 PM, titled: “The Whole Tooth and Nothing but the Tooth.” A puppet show and special guest appearance by Mr. Marshmallow Tooth will be two of the fun and educational elements of this presentation, which will emphasize nutrition and how to make healthy lifestyle choices. Children will also learn proper flossing and brushing techniques.
Throughout the year, Greenwich public health dental hygienists Linda Conti and Jeannie Schnakenberg help over 6,000 students across the Greenwich community to improve their oral health through classroom based dental education, screenings and weekly fluoride rinses. They highlight that having healthy teeth means brushing teeth twice daily, flossing every day, eating nutritious foods, limiting snacks and visiting their dentists regularly. Referrals for dental work are sent home when necessary and the public health hygienists assist with finding a dentist for families, when needed. Dental Hygienist Linda Conti summarizes this valuable service to the children in our community: “Developing good habits at an early age and receiving regular screening helps children get a good start on a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums.”
Dental screenings and education at an early age are an important public health service. Dental caries (decay) is the most prominent chronic childhood disease and is one of the major causes of school absenteeism. Untreated tooth decay can lead to problems with nutrition, growth, school readiness and speech. Children can also easily see that it is important to have healthy teeth to have a nicer smile.
The Greenwich Department of Health supports National Children’s Dental Health Month. For more information about this program and about the School Dental Health Program, call (203)622-7858 or (203)622-3779 at the Greenwich Department of Health or online at www.greenwichct.gov