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NASN Teams Up with the American Dental Association on Oral Health Awareness Campaign

Program will provide school nurses with oral health resources and messages

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Telephone: 312-440-2806
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Silver Spring, MD - The National Association of School Nurses (NASN) and the American Dental Association (ADA) have teamed up to support school nurses in their efforts to promote awareness of oral health in schools. The 2011 campaign, Empowering School Nurses to Change Oral Health Perceptions, is funded by a $160,000 grant to NASN from the DentaQuest Foundation. The campaign, which will be primarily web-based and free to the public, will be launched this summer.

The goal of this initiative is to provide school nurses with oral health resources and messages that can be distributed for use in classrooms and health offices. "School nurses work to ensure that students are healthy and ready to learn. Since 98% of children spend their days in school, addressing oral health through the school nurse makes sense," said Amy Garcia, Executive Director of NASN.

The campaign will complement ADA's existing efforts to raise awareness of the importance of oral health in communities across the country. Each February, ADA reaches millions through its National Children's Dental Health Month (NCDHM). NASN will work with ADA to help distribute NCDHM materials and to develop new materials as needed. A needs assessment of school nurses will be conducted in February to help NASN and ADA determine the resources that will be most beneficial in schools. 

Another goal of the program will be to connect school nurses with dentists who are doctors of oral health. "The ADA looks forward to collaborating with school nurses to help children and their parents understand that oral health is an important part of overall health," says Raymond F. Gist, D.D.S., president of the American Dental Association. "Working together in communities across the nation, school nurses and dentists can help raise awareness about the need for good oral hygiene, good nutrition and regular dental visits in order to prevent dental disease."

About the American Dental Association

The not-for-profit ADA is the nation's largest dental association, representing 157,000 dentist members. The premier source of oral health information, the ADA has advocated for the public's health and promoted the art and science of dentistry since 1859. The ADA's state-of-the-art research facilities develop and test dental products and materials that have advanced the practice of dentistry and made the patient experience more positive. The ADA Seal of Acceptance long has been a valuable and respected guide to consumer dental care products. The monthly The Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA) is the ADA's flagship publication and the best-read scientific journal in dentistry. For more information about the ADA, visit www.ada.org. For more information on oral health, including prevention, care and treatment of dental disease, visit the ADA’s consumer website www.MouthHealthy.org.