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Washington State Dental Association

Be a Part of National Children’s Dental Health Month

What began as a one-day event in a small Midwestern town is now a yearly cause that has helped hundreds of thousands of children improve their dental health. February 1 marks the 75th anniversary of National Children’s Dental Health Month (NCDHM), which brings together thousands of dedicated dental professionals, healthcare providers and educators to promote the benefits of good oral health to children and families. 

NCDHM began as a one-day event in Cleveland, Ohio, on February 3, 1941, and eight years later, the American Dental Association (ADA) held the first national observance of Children’s Dental Health Day on February 8, 1949. The single day observance became a week-long event in 1955. In 1981, the program was extended to a month-long observance known today as National Children’s Dental Health Month.  

Throughout the month, NCDHM messages reach thousands of people in communities across the country and numerous armed services bases. Other local observances often include displays of posters for children and teenagers provided by the ADA, coloring and essay contests, health fairs, free dental screenings through Give Kids A Smile events, museum exhibits, classroom presentations by dentists and other members of the dental team and dental office tours.

On the heels of the new U.S. Dietary Guideline recommendations, this year’s NCDHM theme is Sugar Wars and includes fun information for children, preteens and teenagers. Throughout the month of February, the WSDA, along with the ADA and ADA Foundation will be sharing ways for parents and kids to cut back on sugary snacks that can cause oral and overall health issues, as well as tips on maintaining good oral health by brushing, flossing and eating healthy.

Join us in celebrating and help us spread the word. Visit ADA.org/NCDHM where you will find a number of resources, including a planning guide, social media toolkit, posters and activity sheets.  

Follow the campaign on WSDA’s Facebook and Twitter pages, and join the conversation by using the hashtags #NCDHM and #SugarWars.

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