Oral Health – Children Spotlight

Tooth decay is the most common chronic health problem affecting children in the U.S. In Western Wisconsin 3rd graders, 1 out of 6 kids have untreated dental decay. “Tooth decay, if left untreated even in the earliest stages of life, can have a serious impact on a child’s health,” says Sarah Pedersen, Action Team Co-Chair. It can cause problems that often last into adulthood and affect kids’ ability to sleep, speak, learn and grow into happy and healthy adults.

In honor of National Children’s Dental Health Month this February, Eau Claire Healthy Communities is spreading the word about the importance of children’s oral health several ways!

Preschool Storytime at Altoona and Eau Claire Libraries

  • Chippewa Valley Technical College (CVTC) Dental Hygiene students will share the story of “Potter the Otter Visits the Dentist” with preschoolers and their parents!
  • Every child that attends will receive a free toothbrush and a copy of “Potter the Otter Visits the Dentist!”
  • This story will be featured at Altoona and Eau Claire Libraries during the first week of February.
  • Altoona Public Library Storytime (1303 Lynn Avenue)
    • Monday, Feb. 4th @ 10:30am (Ages 2 and under)
    • Wednesday, Feb. 6th @ 10:30am (Ages 3-5)
    • Wednesday, Feb. 6th @ 1:30pm (Ages 3-5)
  • L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library Storytime (400 Eau Claire Street)
    • Friday, Feb. 8th @ 10:15am (Preschoolers)
    • Saturday, Feb. 9th @ 10:15am (Family)

Eau Claire County Elementary School Poster Board Contest

Eau Claire Healthy Communities is also hosting a poster-board contest for Eau Claire County elementary schoolers with the theme, Brush and Clean in Between To Build A Healthy Smile. Prizes will be awarded based on theme and creativity. Winners will be announced on the ECASD Facebook page and our website, echealthycommunities.org, at the end of the month.

Education Tips to Lower Tooth Decay

  • Limit between-meal snacks. If kids crave a snack, offer them healthy foods
  • Instead of soft drinks, children should drink water and low-fat milk
  • Help your children develop good brushing and flossing habits
  • Schedule regular dental visits(starting at age one!)

-Debbie Schumacher, CVTC Dental Hygiene Instructor, Oral Health Promotion Action Team

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