President's Message

Keep NY Smiling

We recently launched a major campaign to improve children’s dental health in New York State.  Keep NY Smiling recommends stronger State-level policies to protect and improve oral health and fosters local partnerships so communities can achieve measurable improvements in dental health through evidence-based prevention.

We are pleased to share our second policy brief on this important issue.  This new publication highlights evidence-based interventions and strategies proven to help keep children cavity-free.  Tooth decay remains the most common chronic childhood disease, despite the fact that it is largely preventable. The pain and suffering endured by a child with dental disease can impact their ability to learn and grow, and may impede their speech development.  Still, this significant health issue does not get attention because the impact is often hidden by poverty and health disparities. 

This issue affects us all. A statewide oral health survey revealed one in four New York third-graders has untreated decay.  The problem is more prevalent among the disadvantaged: that same oral health survey found that children from low-income families in our state are more likely to have untreated decay.

It is vitally important to increase preventive measures as well as coverage and access to dental care. After all, investing in the prevention of tooth decay in children results in better health into adulthood and lower dental treatment costs for the State and individuals.

Please check out our oral health publications. This fall we will present a set of policy actions that will improve the oral health of all New Yorkers.

Tooth decay is largely preventable – please join us to keep NY smiling.