26 Aug 2011

Kentucky is fluoridated - $1.2 million program to help 25,000 kids in E. Ky. fight tooth decay

$1.2 million program to help 25,000 kids in E. Ky. fight tooth decay
By Beth Musgrave
About 25,000 school children in 16 Eastern Kentucky counties will receive a free fluoride tooth-varnish treatment this school year in an effort to improve the region's high rate of child tooth decay.
A $1 million grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission will pay for most of the program, which will provide the fluoride varnish treatment to children in first through fifth grades in selected schools in Bell, Breathitt, Clay, Elliott, Floyd, Harlan, Jackson, Knott, Knox, Lee, Magoffin, Menifee, Owsley, Perry, Russell and Wolfe counties. The state will pay about $250,000 for the program.

Gov. Steve Beshear, speaking at a news conference at the University of Kentucky Dental School, said the program is the latest effort of an initiative he created in 2009 called Healthy Smiles Kentucky.

"We know that children learn best when they are healthy," Beshear said. "We also know that dental health is a key component of overall health."

In 2001, research showed that half of Kentucky's children had decay in their primary teeth and that nearly half of children ages 2, 3 and 4 had untreated dental problems...

Kentucky is fluoridated

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