By David Yarger
In recognition of National Children’s Dental Health Month, Wheatfield Family Dentistry hygienist Mariah Maund is taking time throughout February to visit local elementary schools to teach children about their pearly whites.
According to the American Dental Association, “The February 2019 National Children's Dental Health Month is brought to you by the ADA. This month-long national health observance brings together thousands of dedicated professionals, health care providers, and educators to promote the benefits of good oral health to children, their caregivers, teachers and many others. This year's NCDHM campaign slogan is ‘Brush and clean in between to build a healthy smile.’ ”
Maund began her “tour” alongside Rob Murphy to demonstrate the basics of good dental health at Drake Elementary School.
The presentation began with a short cartoon video with information on how to keep a glowing smile. Animated talking teeth told children to brush twice a day for two minutes each time to help remove plaque built up throughout the day; and, after brushing, floss along the sides of teeth. Additionally, the video recommended staying away from sweets such as candy and soda, and eating healthy fruits and veggies to keep cavities away.
Following the video, and a few questions from Maund to the class, she properly demonstrated how to brush your teeth using a plastic molding and brush.
After watching Maund brush the teeth, children in the classroom were given a chance to show what was just demonstrated to them.
For Maund, teaching youth about dental health is a must at a young age.
“It’s very important. Once you start young, then you get the habits as you grow older. I feel like, if you don’t start them young, then their habits are broken and it’s hard to fix an adult compared to a child,” Maund said.
She also mentioned the importance of going out to the community and “educate, because, sometimes, parents and children don’t have the right resources to go to the dentist, so it’s good that we can go into the schools and kind of teach them a little bit.”
Giving back to the community also reflects Wheatfield Family Dentistry in a positive light.
“It makes us very happy being able to do this,” Maund said. “It definitely is rewarding at the end of the day.”
After presenting to local students, Maund hopes the youngsters “Brush their teeth two times a day and just keeping care of their teeth so they don’t get cavities.”
After visiting Drake Elementary on Tuesday, Maund visited Tuscarora Indian School on Wednesday, Spruce Elementary next Tuesday and Colonial Village on Wednesday.
Mariah Maund lets students at Drake Elementary School in North Tonawanda brush the fake molding of teeth.