Back-To-School Dental Check-Ups Encouraged

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Back-To-School Dental Check-Ups

As millions of children head back to school, the Pennsylvania Dental Association encourages parents to make dental check-ups part of the back-to-school routine.

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Remember, it's just as important to examine the mouth as the rest of the body. Tooth decay is a bacterial disease; it remains the most common, chronic disease of children.

The statistics speak for themselves. More than half of all 5-9-year-old children have at least one cavity. Cavities form when bacteria in the mouth combine with sugary substances from foods and drinks. The bacteria then produce acid that wears through the enamel and causes cavities. Dental decay is five times more common than asthma and seven times more common than hay fever.

While tooth decay and other dental problems can cause pain and infection, they can also result in concentration problems in school, school absences and problems eating and speaking. In fact, more than 51 million school hours are lost each year due to dental-related illness. By making a dental check-up part of your child's back-to-school routine you are helping prevent tooth decay and other dental problems from occurring. Regular visits to the dentist can also help detect dental problems in their early stages.

PDA encourages parents to help promote good oral health by making sure all children get regular dental check-ups every six months, brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, floss once a day to help remove plaque stuck between the teeth, eat a well-balanced diet and ensure that all health examinations and necessary immunizations are completed in time for the new school year.

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