Dental Health at The Burlington Academy of Learning

The early years in a child's development are the best time for a child to learn about oral health and to develop a positive attitude about good dental habits. It is important to talk to your children about keeping their teeth healthy. We need teeth to chew food, speak, and have a healthy smile. A healthy mouth is part of a healthy body.

Fact: Did you know that tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood disease in the United States! It is more common than obesity, 5 times more common than asthma and 7 times more common than hay fever. Cavities can cause pain, infectious complications, poor growth and poor school attendance. In fact, cavities cause 52 million missed hours of school per year in the US. By kindergarten, 40% of all children have had a cavity.

So what can you do to make sure your child’s teeth and gums will be healthy throughout their lifetime?

Right Toothbrush: Kids should use a soft toothbrush that allows them to reach all areas of their mouth. Remember to replace toothbrushes every three-four months and even sooner if the bristles are worn out, or if your children have been sick.

Attack Plaque: Plaque is a sticky film of germs that forms on teeth after eating. Plaque that’s not removed by brushing twice a day can lead to cavities.

Visit a Dentist: It’s important to visit your dentist regularly your whole life, starting at age one. Seeing a dentist regularly is important for good oral health, as dentists can detect small problems before they become bigger and more painful problems.

Floss Your Teeth: Kids should clean between their teeth once a day, every day, with floss or flossers to remove plaque and food where a toothbrush can’t reach. Kids teeth can be flossed as soon as two of their teeth touch each other.

Use Fluoride: Fluoride is nature’s cavity fighter and occurs naturally in water and some foods. To help protect teeth from cavities, fluoride is added to dental products like toothpaste. Children four years of age or older should use a pea-size amount of fluoride toothpaste as long as they can spit it out.

Baby Tooth Decay Is Real: As soon as teeth appear in your baby’s mouth, it’s possible for your baby to develop cavities. It is important to keep your baby’s gums and teeth clean to prevent tooth decay.

Prevent Kids Tooth Decay: You can prevent tooth decay for your kids by lowering the risk of your baby getting the bacteria that cause tooth decay. Make sure you take good care of your teeth and don’t share utensils and cups – this reduces the number of bacteria in your baby’s mouth.


A balanced diet helps your children’s teeth and gums to be healthy. A diet high in natural or added sugars may place your child at extra risk for tooth decay.

  •         A sugary or starchy food with sugar is safer for teeth if it is eaten with a meal, not as a snack. Chewing during a meal helps produce saliva which helps wash away sugar and starch.
  •         Sticky foods like raisins, other dried fruit, candy and chips are not easily washed away from your kid’s teeth by saliva, water or milk, so they have more cavity-causing potential.


Here's a fun teeth brushing song for your child while they are brushing their teeth. It is called:

Got My Toothpaste, Got My Brush

Got my toothpaste, got my brush,

I won't hurry, I won't rush.

Making sure my teeth are clean,

Front and back and in between.

When I brush for quite a while,

I will have a happy smile!

(Author Unknown)


Our School Dental Health Consultant is Dr. Jeanmarie A. Cosgrove, DMD.

Dr. Cosgrove is a Diplomat of the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry. Her pediatric dental practice is located at: 44 Dale Road, Suite 305 Avon, CT 06001


Dr. Cosgrove hosts our students for field trips and also visits our school to teach the children about dental health and review our dental health policies and procedures.


Dr. Cosgrove recently developed a mobile App titled “Pediatric Dental Visit” that is available for download to your android phone or tablet. It can be found on Google Play and Amazon marketplace.


The app is a step-by-step picture guide to help prepare your child for their first visit to the pediatric dentist. Your child will be able to see, learn the names and the uses of all the dental equipment and instruments. This illustrated guide is also beneficial for children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder. It is straightforward, easy to navigate through and has a “read to me” feature. The benefit of educating your child prior to their first dental appointment will help decrease anxiety and make their visit more relaxing and enjoyable.



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