New PSAs Offer Tips to Parents
When it comes to children’s dental health, much of the policy conversation revolves around insurance coverage, access to care, and other health systems issues. Daily activities like drinking water with fluoride and making home care a regular routine are important too. The Children’s Dental Health Project (CDHP) and UnitedHealthcare are meeting families where they are, providing public service announcements (PSAs) that identify the steps parents can take to put their children on a path to good oral health.
The new PSAs recognize that pediatricians can be helpful partners in oral health, and they also remind parents that when it comes to choosing drinks for their children, “water is always the best choice between meals.”
Although tooth decay rates have fallen in recent years, recently released data show that more than 1 in 6 preschoolers has experienced a cavity, and 45% of school-age children (ages 6-11) have had at least one cavity.
The PSAs feature CDHP Executive Director Meg Booth talking about the steps that parents can take to keep their children cavity-free. In a blog post, Booth wrote, “These PSAs were developed with a recognition that parenting can be overwhelming at times but that small everyday actions can make a dramatic impact on the oral health of everyone in the family.”
The national partners behind these PSAs recognize that the consequences of poor oral health can easily reach far beyond the mouth. In a news release, Tom Wiffler, who is CEO of UnitedHealthcare Specialty Benefits, said, “Maintaining proper oral health matters more than just keeping a sparkling smile — it’s also important for good overall health, especially for children.”
For more information, go to EndCavities.org, a CDHP-created website that has links to videos, fact sheets, infographics and other informative materials.