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Healthy Smiles
Santa Cruz County Oral Health Program

Find an Affordable Dentist

WHY IS GOOD ORAL HEALTH IMPORTANT?

Good Oral Health is an important part of overall health throughout a person’s life. It can affect an individual’s ability to speak, smile with confidence, eat healthy meals, and maintain attendance at work and school. Oral heath also has consequences for heart disease, diabetes, and birth outcomes. Oral health includes overall health of the mouth tissues, along with dental health.

Educational  and Community Resources

TIPS FOR A HEALTHY SMILE

  • Brush your teeth two times a day for 2 min with a fluoride toothpaste
  • Floss your teeth once a day (before brushing your teeth)
  • Visit your dentist two times a year, by the first birthday or first tooth.  Click here for affordable dentists
  • Eat healthy food
  • Limit sugary foods and drinks such as juice, candies, and sodas
  • Wear a mouth guard when playing sports
  • Only put water in baby’s bottle at bedtime
  • Replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months

WHAT IS PLAQUE AND WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO REMOVE?

  • Invisible germs called plaque live in your mouth all the time.
  • Sharing toothbrushes, utensils, cups, and pre-testing food can pass plaque.
  • When you put sugar in your mouth, the plaque converts it into acids that are strong enough to dissolve the hard enamel that covers your teeth.
  • Brush your teeth well with fluoride toothpaste 2 times a day and floss daily to help reduce plaque.
  • See your dentist two times a year to help remove plaque.

GRANT BACKGROUND AND INFORMATION
What does the Santa Cruz County Oral Health Program Do?

The Santa Cruz County Oral Health program, in collaboration with Dientes Community Dental Clinic, Salud Para La Gente, the Santa Cruz County Office of Education, and other community partners collaborate to support oral health education in the community and promote increased access to affordable dental care . These organizations come together under the Santa Cruz Oral Health Access Steering Committee. The Santa Cruz County Oral Health Program promotes oral health equity by prioritizing underserved areas and populations.  Everyone deserves a Healthy and Happy Smile!

How is the County Oral Health Program Funded? In 2016, California passed the Proposition 56 California Healthcare, Research and Prevention Tobacco Tax Act. Oral Health grant funding from Prop 56 revenue is distributed to local oral health programs by the California Department of Public Health.

If you have questions about the oral health programs and/or would like further information on presentations, please send us an email

 

Oral Health Access Santa Cruz was created in 2016 as a steering committee made up of community leaders and organizations, dental and medical clinics, and educators to address the oral health needs in Santa Cruz County. Visit the website for a list of agencies and to view the strategic plan.


If you have questions about the oral health programs and/or would like further information on presentations

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