Outlook Ohio News: Equitas Health Dayton Dental Clinic Hosts “Give Kids a Smile” Event
Equitas Health’s new Dayton dental clinic held its first “Give Kids a Smile” event in Dayton. The “Give Kids a Smile” program is a collaborative effort among the American Dental Association, the Ohio Dental Association, and other dental societies throughout the U.S. to provide dental care and oral health education to children without dental coverage.
Our first “Give Kids a Smile” event this year was in collaboration with Dayton’s East End Community Service’s “Family Night”. Director of Dental Services Dr. Heather Crockett-Miller explains the event. “Children and their parents are invited to Ruskin Elementary School for educational activities, dinner, games and prizes once a month. Dental Assistants, Tich White, Janice Rountree, and I had a booth set up with a demonstration of the amount of sugar in many popular drinks. This encouraged further conversation with families about which drinks with high sugar content should be substituted for healthier options to protect their teeth from cavities. We discussed healthy oral hygiene practices, demonstrated good brushing techniques, and children had the opportunity to practice on our puppets and teeth models. We distributed over 160 oral hygiene kits, including toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, and a 2 minute brushing timer, to each child, parent, and sibling. After our activities, the children, and their families enjoyed a healthy dinner provided by East End Community Services.”
“Based on what I saw, I could tell a few children had already received extensive dental treatment. It was great to hear some had been to the dentist recently. But many revealed that they did not have a toothbrush or rarely brushed their teeth. There were several parents in attendance who had unmet dental needs and expressed that they make sure their kids make it to the dentist but have neglected their own oral health.”
Events like these are important to help improve oral hygiene habits and establish a routine relationship with quality, affordable dental care in the community. By improving children’s oral health literacy, we have put them on the right path to