Dentist By 1 – Oral Health Kit Distribution

Posted on April 23, 2013 in In the Community

As part of its “Dentist By 1” educational campaign, the Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation has donated nearly 4,500 oral health kits with a toothbrush, toothpaste, floss and educational flyer to organizations that support early childhood development for underprivileged children across Illinois.

“This donation is one way to ensure more children in Illinois have the tools to help keep their teeth healthy,” said Lora Vitek, director of philanthropy & community relations for the Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation. “Proper brushing and flossing, along with visiting the dentist, are important habits for children to start at a young age.”

It's recommended that a child should go to the dentist within six months of getting the first tooth – and no later than the first birthday. The Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation launched the “Dentist By 1” campaign to educate parents about the benefits of taking their children to the dentist by age 1 and to encourage them to schedule a visit. In Illinois, children don't see their family dentist on average until they are 3½ years old.

Visiting the dentist by age 1 allows the child and parent to establish a relationship with a dentist, receive oral health care advice and set a foundation for good dental health care habits. Studies suggest that early preventive dental care like checkups and cleanings can not only save in future dental treatment costs, but may also alleviate the pain and suffering that can result from untreated oral health problems.

As part of the “Dentist By 1” campaign, Illinois parents can help local, underprivileged children receive needed oral health supplies. For each parent who pledges to take their child to the dentist by age 1 or to regular dental visits for children older than 1 at, the Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation will donate an oral health kit to children through a local children's charitable organization. Parents who take the pledge will also receive an oral health care kit.

For more information about the importance of visiting the dentist by age 1 and tips on establishing good oral health habits for a lifetime of healthy smiles, visit