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Youngsters brush up on oral hygiene

Youngsters in Easington are brushing up on their oral hygiene as two of the local primary schools receive the 'Healthy Teeth Award'.                

Statistics show that 53% of young children have tooth decay in the Easington locality. The Healthy Teeth Award was launched by the Oral Health Promotion team, County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust, to help reduce tooth decay in young children and to raise awareness between the strong link to healthy eating and good dental health, as well as reinforcing the importance of regular, thorough tooth brushing for young children with the support of an adult.

It is aimed at children under five years old and Sea View Primary School nursery and reception class in Seaham and Acre Rigg Infants/ Nursery Unit in Peterlee are the latest to pick up the award.

Sandra Laws Project Lead said: "The Healthy Teeth Award is aiming to educate everyone who is involved with the care and welfare of young children as well as the children themselves.  Early intervention of healthy eating habits as well as regular tooth brushing with the help and support of parents in particular and visits to the dentist will help children to have healthy teeth and with continued good practice healthy teeth as an adult too.

"It is important that steps are taken to help reduce tooth decay in young children. Healthy teeth enable young children to eat and talk better as well as leading to a happier smile!

"Sea View nursery and reception class have sustained their good practice where healthy eating and healthy teeth are concerned they have continued to demonstrate a very healthy eating regime. The children also have stories and activities regularly that support the importance of looking after their teeth.  This became very apparent during my oral health session with the children as their knowledge on the subject was very good.

"Acre Rigg Infants/Nursery Unit is very pro-active when it comes to the children's oral health.  They always make sure that healthy snacks and drinks are provided and promote the importance of caring for teeth and good oral health."

 This is the fourth year that both establishments have been awarded the 'Healthy Teeth Award' recognising their continuing commitment.

 Julie King, Oral Health Promotion Co-ordinator said:  "This is a great achievement for both Sea View nursery and reception class and Acre Rigg Infants/Nursery Unit - achieving the award for the fourth year. They have both shown evidence of good practice especially where healthy eating is concerned.  The children clearly could recognise healthy snacks and drinks, which would have a positive effect with their oral health this is all thanks to the dedicated staff.

"Developing an award such as this uses positive achievable steps towards tackling health improvement within schools and allows an ideal opportunity for partnership working within the community."

Published: 10 May 2011

'I have to compliment everyone on their pleasant persona and their expertise and knowledge. By the end of the 5 days, I did not feel as though I had been in a hospital ward and was very relaxed.'

Patient, Ward 16 Orthopaedics, University Hospital of North Durham