Students learn key to bright smiles
Second grader Jazmyn Isaac brushes the teeth of an artificial mouth while Spc. Kaila Chase, Dental Clinic 1, guides her at Kessler Elementary School, Feb. 10.

FORT STEWART, Ga. - In observance of National Children's Dental Health Month, members of the dental community, such as U.S. Army Dental Activity and Dental Clinic number four on Fort Stewart, are on a mission to show children proper oral hygiene methods.

Throughout the month of February, they will visit approximately 3,000 students from various schools on- and off-post to teach children from grades pre-kindergarten to third grade proper dental care.

"We came to Kessler Elementary School [Feb.10], to talk about proper brushing techniques, flossing and proper nutrition," said Spc. Joel Galarza, DENTAC. "We want to educate the children, so that they learn that with proper brushing, they would not have to worry about cavities and other [related dental issues] as they grow."

Specialist Galarza stated that plaque is a concern for children.

"Plaque is a very big [issue], and it builds up and causes cavities," he said. "That's the number one disease right now in dental hygiene. It can also cause many [dental issues] like gingivitis."

To prevent plaque and related diseases, Spc. Galarza suggested to cut-down on sugar.

"Avoid sugar contents in food," he said. "Also, drink less energy drinks and chew less gums and candies."

He said that if children learn how to properly take care of their dental health, it creates a healthy foundation as they grow older.

"Children are our future," he shared. "If they learn proper hygiene at this age, they'll be set in the future. They wouldn't have to worry about diseases, cavities, fillings and other issues we want to prevent right now."

Page last updated Thu February 16th, 2012 at 13:58