With the changes to the
Early Years Foundation Stage emphasising the importance of ‘good oral hygiene’
settings need to ensure that they promote good oral hygiene both in setting and
support families at home.
From May 16th
until June 16th 2022, National Smile Month is in full flow, but how
can settings ensure that we don’t just focus the spotlight on a once-a-year
event and make sure that the oral hygiene conversation and education are
threaded throughout everyday best practice?
It is well documented that
during the early years children’s experience of oral health can impact the
rest of their lives. That’s why starting
to teach them about healthy choices and good habits from an early age can help
prevent the impact of tooth decay.
According to Gov.UK, nearly
a quarter of five-year-olds in England have tooth decay and extraction of
children’s teeth is the most common reason for hospital admission for children
under the age of ten. Children in more deprived areas can miss up to 26% of
school time due to dental pain and infection.
At a population, school or early years’ level, evidence tells
us that brushing each day at school, pre-school or nursery over a 2-year period
is effective in preventing tooth decay and can establish lifelong positive behaviour to
promote oral health.
Promoting oral health needs
to be provided within early years settings and how you decide to implement this
is your choice, you may want to focus on linking oral hygiene into areas you
already cover in your setting:
- Healthy eating & choices
- Importance of physical
You can suggest they brush
the teeth of dolls or soft toys, read stories about teeth and smiles, discuss
healthy foods and drinks that help to grow strong teeth, as well as introduce
supervised teeth brushing in your setting.
You can also support parents
to encourage good oral hygiene at home, by letting them know what you’ve been
doing in nursery to promote oral hygiene.
To learn more about oral
hygiene for children, you can book your place on our next Oral Hygiene webinar
and start exploring how you improve and promote oral hygiene in everyday
Busy Bees Education and
Training is passionate about early years and offer a wide range of CPD courses,
apprenticeships, and free webinars specialised for Early Years Professionals.
To attend our next Oral Hygiene Webinar you can book your place here: Book Oral Hygiene Webinar