(Alsip, IL, February 15, 2018) – Students at three Alsip elementary schools learned how to protect their smiles from tooth decay thanks to a new, interactive classroom education program launched by GC America. Staff from GC America, Alsip’s largest employer, kicked off the program by visiting the schools on January 24-25 to quiz students on their oral health knowledge and provide demonstrations of proper dental care. Each of the more than 200 third grade students who participated also received an oral care kit with a new toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss.
Improving oral health is an important focus for child health advocates in Illinois. Though largely preventable, pediatric dental disease is the most common chronic, untreated disease among children in the U.S. In Illinois, more than 22% of children have untreated tooth decay, according to the 2016 Statewide Oral Health Assessment published by the Illinois Children’s Healthcare Foundation, Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation and Michael Reese Health Trust.
The program is already gaining positive attention with many educators requesting classroom visits. Responding to high demand, GC America plans to expand the program to first and second grade students within the Alsip School District as well as additional school districts during the 2018-2019 school year.
The program receives valuable support from America’s ToothFairy: National Children’s Oral Health Foundation, which provided educational materials and oral care products for the program.
“Children with good oral health experience better overall health, perform better in school and miss fewer school days,” said Dr. Mark Heiss, Director of Regulatory and Academic Affairs for GC America. “GC America is proud to support oral health educational programming for students in our Alsip schools, helping ensure they have the tools they need for optimal oral health, well-being and success.”
About GC America
GC America Inc. is a leading private manufacturer of innovative dental products, committed to excellence, and dedicated to quality and customer satisfaction. For more information, visit www.gcamerica.com.
About America’s ToothFairy: National Children’s Oral Health Foundation
As a resource provider, America’s ToothFairy: National Children’s Oral Health Foundation (NCOHF) increases access to oral health care by supporting non-profit clinics and community partners delivering education, prevention and treatment services for underserved children. Since its inception in 2006, America’s ToothFairy has distributed more than $18 million in donated products, educational materials and financial grants to improve oral health outcomes for children and youth in need. For more information, visit www.AmericasToothFairy.org.