PARSIPPANY, NJ – Aug. 10, 2010 – Each year, more than 51 million school hours are lost as a result of problems related to tooth decay, the most common chronic childhood disease in America. Yet according to a recent survey by Trident®, more than eight in 10 (84%) American parents don’t realize this.
PARSIPPANY, NJ – Aug. 10, 2010 – Each year, more than 51 million school hours are lost as a result of problems related to tooth decay, the most common chronic childhood disease in America. Yet according to a recent survey by Trident®, more than eight in 10 (84%) American parents don’t realize this. That is why Trident, in partnership with Oral Health America’s Smiles Across America® program (SAA), and actor Chris O’Donnell announced today in Los Angeles that they are teaming up to help fight cavities among the nation’s youth and address the need for oral disease prevention services.
Tooth decay affects approximately half of all second graders and nearly 80 percent of 17-year-olds. Despite this, nearly three-quarters (74%) of U.S. parents don’t necessarily consider tooth decay to be a chronic childhood disease. However, many parents do recognize that, if left untreated, tooth decay can negatively impact a child’s well-being, self-esteem, or even concentration level.
The cause resonated with Chris O’Donnell, someone accustomed to striking a smile on many red carpets.
“As a parent of five children, I know first-hand the importance of healthy dental habits for my family,” said O’Donnell. “The Smiles Across America program helps to not only promote healthy habits, but also provides critical dental care services through schools reaching those kids that might not otherwise have access. I’m thrilled to be joining this effort to help celebrate and protect smiles.”
The Importance of Education
It’s no surprise that education can play a large role in preventing cavities. Nine in 10 (92%) parents believe cavities in children are preventable, yet a majority of parents (86%) struggle to get a child to take care of their teeth.
While convincing a child to take proper care of his or her teeth is no easy task, here are a few important reminders for parents:
Raising the Goal
Smiles Across America supports dental services for over 250,000 children annually in underserved communities nationwide. Smiles Across America pledged to deliver one million sealants, a critical preventative oral health care procedure for children, by the end of 2010. The program has already reached that goal and has now raised it to two million sealants by 2020.
“Through this program, we’re committed to raising public awareness about the importance of healthy mouths for healthy lives,” said Beth Truett, President and CEO of Oral Health America. “Our three-year partnership with Trident has enabled us to expand our area of service in 2010, helping us to be well on our way to meeting our increased goal.”
Smiles Across America provides its network with the funding and technical assistance in the areas of communication and coalition building, enabling them to more than double the number of children who receive oral care and address barriers to care such as lack of resources and transportation, low literacy and language diversity.
“We believe that every family should have access to preventative dental care for healthy smiles,” says Becky McAninch, Senior Brand Manager, Trident Marketing. “Smiles Across America provides such an important service to communities around the country. We’re proud to help aid their efforts.”
How To Get InvolvedPurchase any pack of Trident gum from September 13, 2010 through September 19, 2010 and five cents per pack will be donated to Smiles Across America. In addition, parents can follow campaign efforts on Facebook at facebook.com/tridentgum.