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"Brush, brush, brush your teeth
Gently twice a day,
Floss the food between your teeth
To help prevent decay!"
Making it fun to learn about oral hygiene.
Our oral health education programs feature Mighty Molar, a cartoon character that we developed and produced, to help make learning about good oral hygiene a fun and memorable experience for people of all ages.
Mighty Molar is a 6-foot tall, smiling tooth costume
and is often accompanied by Murray the Toothbrush,
another life-size character. Both Mighty and Murray
attend community events and are featured in skits
and other educational programs we bring to local
elementary schools, day cares, and Head Start
programs. Kids learn about healthy foods, how to
brush their teeth, and tooth safety. SVHC staff,
community members, senior volunteers, and SUNY
Cortland students are all involved in sharing the
message that teeth are meant to last a lifetime.
mighty molar program
Why Oral Health Matters
Oral health affects overall health, diet, speech, and appearance, and good brushing and flossing habits need to start early. According to the American Dental Association, cavities are the most prevalent chronic disease of childhood. Kids who have untreated cavities may experience pain and infection, have trouble concentrating in class, and have poor self-esteem. For adults, inflammation related to infection and untreated gum disease has been associated with higher risks of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. Poor oral health in pregnant women has also been linked to premature birth and low birth weight in babies. Tooth extractions in adults, caused by poor oral health, cause pain and problems with speech, chewing, and overall nutrition status.
Oral Health Problems Are Common and Preventable
Tooth decay affects more than one-fourth of U.S. children aged 2–5 years and half of those aged 12–15 years.
About half of all children and two-thirds of adolescents aged 12–19 years from lower-income families have had decay.
Among all adolescents aged 12–19 years, 20% currently have untreated decay.
Advanced gum disease affects 4%–12% of U.S. adults. Half of the cases of severe gum disease in the United States are the result of cigarette smoking. The prevalence of gum disease is three times higher among smokers than among people who have never smoked.
One-fourth of U.S. adults aged 65 or older have lost all of their teeth. (www.cdc.gov)
Cortland County Oral Health Statistics: