Everyone should brush their teeth, right? Help your family learn more about the importance of good oral health and develop positive attitudes about consistent dental habits. A healthy mouth is part of a healthy body. Embrace this daily practice and find ways to celebrate it this month!
- Books to celebrate Dental Health Month
• A Visit to the Dentist (Little Bill) by Eleanor Fremont
• Brush Your Teeth Please Pop-Up by Leslie McGuire
• Dear Tooth Fairy by Pamela Duncan Edwards
• How Many Teeth? (Let’s-Read-and-Find-Out Science 1) by Paul Showers
• Little Rabbit’s Loose Tooth by Lucy Bate
• Open Wide: Tooth School Inside by Laurie Keller
• The Night Before the Tooth Fairy by Natasha Wing
• The Story of the Tooth Fairy by Tom Paxton
• Throw Your Tooth on the Roof: Tooth Traditions from Around the World by Selby Beeler
• What Do the Fairies Do With All Those Teeth? by Michel Luppens
- Acid Attack Experiment
“Why do I have to brush my teeth?” is a common question asked by kids. Next time show them why brushing is so important.
• What you’ll need:
1 hard boiled egg
1 clear jar
2 cups white vinegar
• What to do:
Ask your children why an egg has a shell? Explain how the enamel on their teeth protects the tooth just as a shell protects an egg.
Pour several inches of vinegar into the container and carefully add the egg.
What will happen:
Check out the egg after it has soaked in the vinegar overnight and then after 2 days. Is it softer or harder?
• What this teaches:
The vinegar causes the shell of the egg to break down and become soft, the same way that tooth enamel is damaged by acid and bacteria in the mouth. Brushing every day is the only way to keep this from happening.
- Apple Smiles
This is a healthy dental craft and snack. Your kids create their own healthy mouth, and then eat it!
• Select a large, Red Delicious apple of your choice. Using a red apple will help to create pretty lips for your mouth, but if a red apple is not available, any color will do. One apple will make enough “smiles” for four people.
• Use the apple corer and remove the apple’s core. Slice the apple in half. Then continue to slice the apple into segments that are approximately a 1/2 inch wide
• Once you have the apple divided into segments, give each person their own “smile” -two segments of apple.
• Select the appropriate spread for the apple — which can be either peanut butter, or a peanut butter alternative (apricot jam or marmalade will work just fine)
• Using the butter knife or Popsicle stick, evenly spread the peanut butter, or the alternative, on one side of each apple segment. Place each segment next to each other, with the spread side up.• Each person should then be given five to six mini white marshmallows each. Using one apple segment, place the marshmallows along the edge of the apple, where the skin and flesh meet. The marshmallows should appear to curve with the shape of the segment.
• Once all of the marshmallows have been placed on the spread, take your other apple segment, and carefully place it on top of the marshmallows. Make sure you try to align the apple as evenly as possible. Then, press down on the fleshy part of the apple that is opposite of the skin.
• Voila! You have now created a healthy dental craft and snack of your own.
- Toothbrush Painting
After shopping for new toothbrushes this month (new toothbrushes can motivate kids to get excited about brushing), use the old ones to do some fun painting with a toothbrush instead of a paintbrush!
How will you celebrate Dental Health Month? What tips do you use to promote healthy teeth & gums in your home?