Early Childhood Caries Education in a Preschool Setting
Students will integrate oral health into their preschool clinical experience.
(Materials: colored pencils, crayons, paper, mirror, toothbrushes, toothpaste)
Oral Health Education for Preschool Child
In a classroom setting, students can deliver education to a select group of children. Approach the assignment using the following suggestions:
1. Help children describe why their teeth are important.
- Children will look at their teeth in a mirror and draw a picture of their own teeth.
- Students will ask children to describe what their teeth do (help them eat, talk, smile).
2. Teach children how to keep their teeth clean.
- Student will demonstrate tooth brushing with large brush and tooth model.
- 2 minutes 2x/day
- Use fluoride toothpaste
- Children will practice tooth brushing with their own toothbrush and toothpaste.
Oral Health Education for Preschool Staff
Students can provide staff professional development in the following ways:
- Describe the causes of early childhood caries (ECC).
- Emphasize how the combination of bacteria, sugar, acid, and frequency of eating contribute to development of ECC.
- Discuss ways that staff can help prevent development of ECC:
- Healthy snacks
- Tooth brushing time
Oral Health Education for Parents
Students can provide education for parents. Select one topic for an oral health information column in the preschool newsletter for parents:
- Importance of fluoride and available sources. Discuss the different types of fluoride and the benefits/risks of each:
- Topical fluoride – toothpaste – fluoride varnish
- Systemic fluoride – community water, dietary supplement
- Definition of a dental home and identification of resources available in the preschool community with reasons for having a dental home.
- Identify possible dental homes in specific zip code for patients with Medicaid.
- Causes of early childhood caries. Describe how the combination of bacteria, sugar, acid, and frequency of eating contribute to development of ECC.
- How to prevent development of ECC. Discuss how good nutrition combined with keeping a child’s mouth clean can prevent ECC.
- Students will describe healthy snacks.
- Students will describe proper tooth brushing.