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Illinois Families Invited to Receive Free Dental Exams for Young Children

Event to be held Aug. 10 at Elgin Community College

Naperville, Ill. (July 1, 2019) – Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation will offer free dental exams for Illinois children ages 5 and younger from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 10 at Elgin Community College.

The event is part of the Foundation’s Dentist By 1 program, which educates parents and caregivers about good oral health habits and the benefits of starting dental visits early. Those attending will receive free preventive and diagnostic services including cleanings, exams, fluoride treatments, sealants and X-rays.

For children starting school this fall, the visit will satisfy the mandatory dental screening for kindergarteners required by state law. Free preventive dental care will be provided at Elgin Community College’s Dental Assisting Clinic, 1700 Spartan Drive.

Appointments are recommended and can be made until Aug. 7. Parents and caregivers can schedule an appointment by visiting dentistby1.com/Illinois/events, or by calling 630-718-4844. Spanish-speaking parents can call 630-718-4957. Dental visits without an appointment will be limited.

Each child attending the event will receive an oral health kit with a toothbrush, toothpaste, floss and a dental care instructional sheet in English and Spanish. Costumed characters from the Land of Smiles oral health education program will be in attendance to teach children and parents about good oral health habits.

The Dentist By 1 event is held in collaboration with Elgin Community College’s dental assisting program and Greater Elgin Family Care Center. Dental students and instructors will provide volunteer support during the event.

“Most Illinois children have their first visit to the dentist when they are 2½ years or older1 — much later than they should,” said Lora Vitek, director of Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation. “By then, they could have a mouthful of decay. Children need to begin visiting the dentist by their first birthday. To help encourage early dental visits, we have partnered with Elgin Community College to provide preventive dental care to young children.”

Tooth decay is one of the most prevalent diseases among children and can develop any time after the first tooth comes in, starting at around 6 months of age. Scheduling a dental visit by age 1 allows a child and parent to establish a relationship with their dentist. It also sets the foundation for regular visits and good oral health habits for years to come.

For more information about Dentist By 1, visit dentistby1.com/Illinois.

1 2018 Delta Dental of Illinois Children’s Oral Health Survey, https://www.youroralhealthhub.com/wp-content/themes/oralHealth/resources/DDIL-Childrens-Oral-Health-Report-2018.pdf, page 7