Brush, Floss, Smile…February is Children’s Oral Health Month!

Jan 19, 2023 | Professional Development, What's New?

Oral health is vital to maintaining the overall health and well-being for all.  As a professional working with our youngest children, you play a critical role in establishing healthy habits. Did you know that 90% of brain development occurs before the age of 5? This is the very best time to establish the most essential lifelong practices. Start children with an easy and fun habit – toothbrushing! Toothbrushing in the classroom is simple. 

Healthy Child Care Colorado is proud to support classroom toothbrushing through our Healthy Smiles Champions Program. Healthy Smiles Champions work with programs to bring toothbrushing and fun oral health learning activities, using the Cavity Free Kids curriculum, into daily routines. Programs receive support from their champions and a toolkit of supplies and materials that can be used to sustain important oral health activities. 

The Head Start Early Childhood and Learning Center lists several benefits for brushing teeth together at a classroom table: 

  • It provides a calm, orderly way to teach children how to brush. 
  • It takes less time when all the children brush together and is less messy than brushing at the sink. 
  • It allows teachers to serve as role models by brushing their own teeth with children. 
  • It allows teachers sitting at the table with children to observe and encourage each child or make changes to their brushing method. 
  • It is less likely that children will pass bacteria (germs) from one toothbrush to another. Bacteria can easily spread when children rinse their toothbrushes under the same stream of water or if they play with their toothbrushes and the bristles touch each other. 
  • It provides an opportunity to include math and science concepts. 

Want to learn more? Join us on March 25, 2023, for our virtual Healthy Smiles Summit. Summit participants will receive 5.5 hours of state approved training along with their own toolkit to help them start moving children down the path to good oral health habits. 

By: Becky Edwards, Early Childhood Specialist