Letter: Healthy smiles make healthy kids | AspenTimes.com

Letter: Healthy smiles make healthy kids

Did you know brushing your teeth for two minutes twice a day is proven to ensure a healthier mouth? Two hundred ten Aspen and Basalt second-graders learned that and more at the Children’s Dental Fair on Feb. 20 at Aspen High School. In celebration of Children’s Dental Health Month, the children had a day of tooth brushing, flossing and nutritional lessons and played games such as pin the brush on the plaque. And parents, be proud — our Basalt and Aspen second-graders show marked improvement in their oral health over the past 15 years.

The 15th annual Children’s Dental Fair was sponsored by the Aspen to Parachute Dental Health Alliance, a valley nonprofit whose mission is to create a comprehensive dental system that promotes education, prevention and improved access for residents from Aspen to Parachute. Twenty-five community “oral-health champions” volunteered; dental screenings were provided by local dentists Dr. Ward Johnson, Dr. John Miller and Dr. Schuyler Van Gordon and dental hygienists Liz Colin and Paula Casper.

Despite achievements in lowering oral disease, dental caries remains the No. 1 disease of childhood in the U.S. and Colorado. Oral-health promotion is critical to increasing quality of life. Oral disease may unnecessarily impact children’s performance in school, speech development, nutrition, self-esteem and sleep.

Thank you, volunteers, for helping our kids be healthier and the day be brighter!

Kelly Keeffe

Regional oral health consultant, Aspen to Parachute Dental Health Alliance

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