Maryland Provides 100,000 Fluoride Varnish Applications to Children Across the State

Baltimore, MD (February 27, 2014) -- Maryland officials announced today that it reached a significant milestone – 100,000 fluoride varnish applications have been applied by medical providers through Maryland’s Mouths Matters fluoride varnish program, an initiative launched in 2009 designed to prevent tooth decay in high-risk children throughout the state.

The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH) Office of Oral Health (OOH) and the Maryland Medical Assistance Program (Medicaid) co-administer Maryland’s Mouths Matter, whereby trained medical practitioners are reimbursed by Medicaid to apply fluoride varnish to children ages 9 months-3 years old enrolled in the Medicaid program during their regularly scheduled medical well-child visits.

"We've made the better choice to set goals to measure our progress and make our state a healthier place to raise a child. As part of the Maryland's Mouths Matters program, over 100,000 medical providers have applied for fluoride varnish applications," said Governor O'Malley. "Working together as One Maryland, we will continue to build on our progress and ensure that every child in Maryland receives vital dental care."

Oral disease is the most common disease among children in the United States. Nationally, it affects three out of every five children and is more common than asthma. Low-income children suffer five times the number of cavities than children from middle- and upper-income families.

“The Maryland’s Mouths Matter fluoride varnish program has been extremely effective in getting the medical community involved in the oral health care of Maryland’s children,” said Harry Goodman, DMD, MPH, Director, Maryland Office of Oral Health. “Family physicians, pediatricians and nurse practitioners are now not only protecting children from cavities, but they are also screening very young children for oral disease at a very appropriate time and helping facilitate access to dentists for those children found to be in immediate need for dental care.”

Fortunately, cavities are 100 percent preventable. Fluoride varnish is effective in preventing childhood tooth decay in both baby and permanent teeth. It is a protective coating that is painted on teeth that over time releases fluoride, strengthening teeth and preventing decay. Fluoride varnish is applied quickly and easily and dries immediately making it safe to use on babies from the time their first teeth appear. The fluoride varnish application, along with brushing teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and drinking fluoridated water where available, is an important and effective method in reducing and preventing cavities.

"It is essential to prevent cavities, toothaches, and teeth decay in order to meet a child's overall health care needs," said Susan Tucker, Executive Director of Medicaid's Office of Health Services. "In addition, a child is more likely to attend school, and thrive in school, when s/he isn't dealing with severe dental pain. The 'Mouths Matter' campaign not only has improved children's health outcomes, it has improved children's social outcomes as well."

News of the 100,000th child in Maryland to receive the fluoride varnish treatment as part of the Maryland’s Mouths Matter program comes on the heels of the State’s announcement last week of the results from the Oral Health Survey of Maryland School Children, which revealed a 41 percent decrease in untreated tooth decay between 2001 and 2011.

For additional information regarding the Maryland Mouths Matter program, please visit: http://phpa.dhmh.maryland.gov/oralhealth

The Office of Oral Health focuses on improving the oral health of Marylanders, preventing oral diseases and injuries and increasing access to oral health care. For more information on Office of Oral Health programs, please visit phpa.dhmh.maryland.gov/oralhealth/SitePages/Home.asp.

###
 
Stay connected: www.twitter.com/MarylandDHMH or www.facebook.com/MarylandDHMH
 

Substance Abuse Help

 

Zika Information

 

Rabies Information


     

WCHD News

 

Extreme Heat often results in the highest number of annual deaths among all weather-related hazards. In most of the United States, extreme heat is defined as a long period (2 to 3 days) of high heat and humidity with temperatures above 90 degrees. In extreme heat, evaporation is slowed and the body must work extra hard to maintain a normal temperature. This can lead to death by overworking the human body. Remember that:

Extreme heat can occur quickly and without warning.

Older adults, children, and sick or overweight individuals are at greater risk from extreme heat.

Humidity increases the feeling of heat as measured by a heat index.

IF YOU ARE UNDER AN EXTREME HEAT WARNING:

  • Find air conditioning.
  • Avoid strenuous activities.
  • Watch for heat illness.
  • Wear light clothing.
  • Check on family members and neighbors.
  • Drink plenty of fluids.
  • Watch for heat cramps, heat exhaustion, and heatstroke.
  • Never leave people or pets in a closed car. Read more ...

    Health Department emphasizes the importance of rabies prevention and safety

    Snow Hill, MD- The Worcester County Health Department has confirmed eight rabies cases locally since the beginning of 2019, emphasizing the importance of rabies awareness and proper pet vaccination. The latest confirmed positive rabies case was a groundhog found on Manklin Creek Rd in the Ocean Pines area on July 3.

    Read more ...

    Men's Health Month

    The purpose of Men’s Health Month is to heighten the awareness of preventable health problems and encourage early detection and treatment of disease among men and boys. This month gives health care providers, public policy makers, the media, and individuals an opportunity to encourage men and boys to seek regular medical advice and early treatment for disease and injury. The response has been overwhelming with thousands of awareness activities in the USA and around the globe.

    Read more ...

    Summer Wellness Camp

    The Worcester County Health Department will host a free, week-long health and wellness camp for youth age 12-17 this summer. From June 17-21, campers will learn about the importance of health, fitness, setting personal goals and much more. The summer camp is part of Worcester Health’s Promoting Health Among Teens program and will feature guest speakers, snacks and lunch, learning activities and field trips to locations around Worcester including the Jolly Roger amusement park in Ocean City.

    Read more ...

    Legionella Facts

    Legionella is a bacteria that can cause a type of pneumonia called Legionnaires' disease. The disease is caused by inhaling mist from water containing the bacteria. The bacteria are present in many different manmade and natural water systems. Each year, 8,000 - 18,000 people in the United States are hospitalized with Legionnaires' disease. The disease is usually treated successfully with antibiotics, but can sometimes be fatal. The disease is not spread from person to person. Certain groups of people are more likely to become seriously ill when infected with Legionella:

    Read more ...
 Lower Shore Health Insurance Assistance Program