Faculty and students from the West Virginia University School of Dentistry traveled to two schools in Pocahontas County April 16 to teach students “Lessons in a Lunchbox: Healthy Teeth Essentials and Facts about Snacks.”
The lunchboxes were handed out at Hillsboro Elementary School and Green Bank Elementary-Middle School. They are designed to teach children the importance of proper oral health hygiene and good food choices.
On the inside of the lunchbox, the students found illustrations of proper brushing and flossing and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s “My Pyramid for Kids,” which encourages healthy eating and physical activity. The lunchbox also contains a “Dental Care in a Carrot” case, which holds a toothbrush, toothpaste, dental floss and a sand timer. The top of the carrot can be used as a rinse cup.
The outside of the lunchbox is decorated on each side. The front and back show the logos of organized dentistry and the sponsors of the program. The left side lists the dental schools in the country and the website for the American Dental Association. An identification label for the child’s name is on the right side. Near the opening of the lunchbox, kids found a “See Yourself Becoming a Dentist” reflective, metallic sticker.
“We’re trying to connect to students in areas that really need care in our state,” Louise Veselicky, D.D.S., interim dean of the WVU School of Dentistry, said. “If we can get children to establish good oral health habits at an early age, they will not have serious problems later in life. That is our goal.”
The Maryland Children’s Oral Health Institute created “Lessons in a Lunchbox: Healthy Teeth Essentials and Facts about Snacks.” For more information on it, see www.mycohi.org.
For more information on the WVU School of Dentistry, see www.hsc.wvu.edu/sod.
CONTACT: Angela Jones, HSC News Service