Registered dental hygienist Jeanne Muttera high fives Mason McKay after a check-up. Photo submitted

Oral Health Clinic helps children have healthy teeth, bright smiles

Tooth decay is the most common childhood disease today. Proposition 56 for ”Healthy teeth and bright smiles” offers services to combat this issue. Registered Dental Hygienist and Oral Health Program Coordinator Jeanne Muttera offers an update on Lassen County’s Oral Health Clinic Program.

“We now offer the dental screening and fluoride application on a ‘Call in and schedule appointment basis.’ We are also available Monday afternoons from 1-4 p.m.”

The program is offered to Lassen County residents aged 0-20 years old or pregnant and nursing women. The main focus of the program is to educate residents of Lassen County on the importance of good dental health with an emphasis on thorough brushing morning and night and flossing at least once daily.

Studies show a direct link between good oral health and good overall health. Dental health is systemic meaning that issues can originate when bacteria from tooth decay makes its way to the bloodstream creating additional health complications. Lassen County’s Oral Health Clinic has served nearly 700 Lassen County residents and there are plans to bring dental screenings and fluoride applications to our local schools this fall. Other plans include a possible collaboration with Northeastern Rural Health Clinic to provide Tele-Dentistry for Lassen County. The program aims to inform people about the importance of fluoride and its ability to strengthen tooth enamel to better protect against decay. The goal is to teach preventative behaviors that will last a lifetime.

As an additional bonus, residents up to age 20 who receive fluoride applications are eligible to receive a twenty dollar gift card from one of these three businesses: Round Table Pizza, Sierra Theatres or Big 5 sporting Goods. The reward cards can be

issued with regular dental screenings and applications at three months intervals.

For more information or times and locations, call 251-8183.