CDHP and UnitedHealthcare Launch New Campaign To Engage Parents on the Importance of Dental Health

CDHP Toddler and Dentist

Release new radio and TV PSAs aimed at helping parents keep their kids’ teeth healthy 

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Children’s Dental Health Project (CDHP) and UnitedHealthcare are releasing radio and TV public service announcements (PSAs) aimed at helping parents keep their kids’ teeth healthy. Although tooth decay remains the most common chronic disease for children and teens, many Americans aren’t aware of the steps they can take at home to prevent tooth decay for themselves or their kids.

The PSAs, featuring helpful tips from CDHP Executive Director Meg Booth, MA, will be distributed to radio, broadcast and online media outlets in 30- and 60-second formats. To view the PSAs, click here. The PSAs direct parents and caregivers to CDHP’s EndCavities.org website that offers videos, fact sheets and other helpful resources for educating families and policymakers.

Recent U.S. data show that 1 in 6 preschool-age children has experienced at least one cavity, and many Americans aren’t aware of the steps they can take at home to keep themselves or their kids cavity-free. In fact, a recent UnitedHealthcare survey found that just 31 percent of Americans correctly recognized that most medical professionals recommend children should visit the dentist for the first time by age one.

Supporting parents’ efforts at home can help keep kids healthier and avoid the discomfort, anxiety and cost that can come from treatment to repair decayed teeth. Young children with advanced tooth decay are typically treated under general anesthesia. This kind of treatment is also costly. For example, at Colorado’s largest children’s hospital, an estimated $40 million was spent in a single year on treating early childhood cavities.

“Tooth decay can be painful, and it also makes it difficult for children to eat, sleep, learn and socialize,” says Booth. “The good news is that it is a preventable disease. That’s why we’re partnering with UnitedHealthcare on these PSAs to help support families in encouraging important oral health habits, starting at birth and continuing through adulthood.”

“Maintaining proper oral health matters more than just keeping a sparkling smile — it’s also important for good overall health, especially for children,” says Tom Wiffler, MBA, CEO, UnitedHealthcare Specialty Benefits. “We are collaborating with the Children’s Dental Health Project to share this important information about ways to help children, parents and all Americans adopt healthier oral habits.”

CDHP is a Washington, DC-based nonprofit organization (cdhp.org) that analyzes policies, and advises federal and state health officials about cost-effective ways to improve oral health. UnitedHealthcare, a UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH) company, offers the full spectrum of health benefit programs for individuals, employers, and Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries.

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