Librarians, Plan Ahead for February: Children’s Dental Health Awareness Month

January health program ideas are here to support your library’s health programming strategy – brought to you by The Pulse, part of the Gale’s Health and Wellness Resource Center.    Is your library focusing on February as National Heart Health Month?

February is practically synonymous with Valentine’s Day and Valentine’s Candy. Unfortunately, that candy can cause problems for children’s teeth, many of which go untreated. In fact, one in six children have at least one untreated cavity and one in five children have not visited a dentist in the last year, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Fortunately, February is also Children’s Dental Health Awareness Month and promoting it will be easy and fun with these free resources and with information from  Health and Wellness Resource Center.

  • Quick and Easy: printable coloring pages and other activities for children and teens.
  • Featured Resources: books for children and their caregivers and links to reliable online information
  • Book Club: ideas for your Tween Book Club
  • Tie In:  ideas for library programs that will get children and teens brushing
  • Community Resources: local agencies to contact
  • Publicity Resources: free resources to help you publicize Children’s Dental Health Awareness Month at your library through social networking sites or traditional printed materials
  • Fun Stuff: links to fun activities for children

Quick and Easy

Coloring Pages:

Activity Pages:

Brushing Incentives:

Featured Resources


Children’s Dental Health – Picture Books about Dentists and Teeth

Reliable Online Information:

Book Club

Smile by Raina Telgemeier (Scholastic/Graphix, February 2010). Autobiography/Comic Book, Ages 9 to 13.

From the publisher: “Raina just wants to be a normal sixth grader. But one night after Girl Scouts she trips and falls, severely injuring her two front teeth, and what follows is a long and frustrating journey with on-again, off-again braces, surgery, embarrassing headgear, and even a retainer with fake teeth attached. And on top of all that, there’s still more to deal with: a major earthquake, boy confusion, and friends who turn out to be not so friendly. This coming-of-age true story is sure to resonate with anyone who has ever been in middle school, and especially those who have ever had a bit of their own dental drama.”

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl (New York: Knopf, 1964). Chapter Book, Ages 9 to 12.

Not only does this beloved book feature chocolate, but also dentists (Willy Wonka’s estranged father). Use the book to discuss the good side and bad side of candy and to discuss dentists and flossing.

Tie Ins

Crafts and Other Fun Program Ideas

Healthy Teeth Story Time Fun

Community Resources

Find a local agency to partner with, a speaker, or other local resources here:
  • American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry

Publicity Resources

Use these free resources from the American Dental Association alongside your library’s February programming information – newsletter, blog, posters, or fliers – to promote Children’s Dental Health Awareness Month at your library.

Fun Stuff

Add some interesting and helpful interactive links to a library program, your library website, Facebook page, or Twitter feed:

Interactive Web Sites for Children and Teens


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s