October 2008  Edition
Word of Mouth
A newsletter from the Maine Dental Access Coalition
In This Issue
Tobacco Intervention
Maine Oral Health News
KOHP News
Employment Opportunities
National Research & News
Domestic Violence and Dental Providers
Sadie & Harry Davis Foundation
MDAC News
Content Contributors Wanted
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Dear Sarah,
Welcome to Word of Mouth, the newsletter for all who care about improving the oral health of Maine's people.  To ensure that you continue to receive emails from us, add mdac@mcd.org your address book today.
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Tobacco Intervention: Basic Skills Training 

The Partnership For A Tobacco-Free Maine is pleased to announce a basic skills training specifically designed for dental care providers on how to conduct effective, brief conversations with your patients.  The first segment of the training is an online program which covers topics such as "What's the Harm?", "Tobacco Dependence", "Tobacco Treatment Medications" and "Tobacco and Metabolism".  The second part of the training will be conducted in Freeport, Maine on Friday, December 12 from 8:00 a.m. to noon and will include discussion of "Behavioral Change Theory", "Encouraging Change" and how to conduct "Brief Interventions".  Over 1800 professionals have already attended this training.  This is the first time, however, that the training is being offered specifically for dental professionals. The cost of the training is $50.00, which includes the online and in-person segments, all training materials, breakfast and CEU certificates (approved by the Board of Dental Examiners for 5.25 hours).  Brochures have been mailed to all Maine dental practices.  For additional brochures, please contact Becky Hendrix at the Center For Tobacco Independence at 662-5224 or e-mail at tobaccotrng@mmc.org
 
Or, you can access the registration page directly by going to http://www.tobaccofreemaine.org/basic_skills
 
Maine Oral Health News
 
MaineCare has begun reimbursing physicians for fluoride varnish applications. Fluoride varnish is an extremely effective strategy for preventing or delaying early childhood caries, and because  very few children see a dentist before the age of three or four, encouraging physicians to become the first responders to oral health issues is an important prevention strategy. The Bangor Daily News has an article here. The Kids Oral Health Partnership (see below), From the First Tooth, and the Maine Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics  are all working to increase the capacity of the medical community to become a dental home for children until they find a dental home in a dental practice. 
 
Head Start and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry have joined forces to bring a dental home to all Head Start kids. Maine is not among the initial roll out states, but  pediatric dentist Dr Stephen Mills is the point person for this initiative and he will be talking with Head Start Directors and local Dental Societies across the state about the project. For more details, see below in the National Research & News Section.
Kids Oral Health Partnership News
 
KOHP is teaming up with Dental Societies around the state to invite local health care providers to share a meal and talk about providing services to the 0-3 year olds in their communities. The first dinner was with the MerryMeeting Dental Society and next month will be the Hancock County Dental Society. If you would like to be part of these conversations, either as a host or a guest, contact  KOHP.
 
If your organization or office would like to receive free training on promoting early oral health, and identifying and addressing oral health problems in children 0-5 yearskohp logo, contact bvaughan@mcd.org. or go to the Resources for Providers page at www.kohp.org to sign up directly.
 
For notification of up coming training, contact Bonnie Vaughan at the above email.
mcd logoEmployment Opportunities  
Medical Care Development is looking for an Oral Health Project Manager. Check out this job and others at the Job Postings page of the MDAC web site.  Remember to list your oral health openings here also.
National Research & News  
 
Dental Care Can Reduce Risk of Preterm Birth by Nearly 50 Percent
According to a study conducted by Aetna and Columbia University College of Dental Medicine, women who received dental care before or during their pregnancy had a lower risk of giving birth to a preterm or low birth weight baby than pregnant women who didn't seek dental care at all. The study, conducted between January 1, 2003 and September 30, 2006, reviewed medical and dental insurance data for 29,000 pregnant women who each had medical and dental coverage with Aetna to determine if there was an association between dental treatment and the likelihood of experiencing either birth outcome. "Further studies need to be done but our findings show that dental treatment had a protective effect on adverse birth outcomes in women who sought dental treatment," said David A. Albert, DDS, MPH, Director, Division of Community Health, College of Dental Medicine, Columbia University.  Access article online at:
 
AAPD/Head Start Initiative Kicks Off in Six States The new Head Start Dental Home Initiative, developed by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the Office of Head Start, will launch in six states now through October. According to the AAPD, the partnership was forged to address childhood tooth decay and help parents and caregivers secure quality dental homes for all Head Start children. "The five-year initiative is designed to provide quality dental homes and the foundation for a lifetime of optimal oral health for Head Start and Early Head Start children," said Dr. Jim Crall, project director. "Oral health is integral to the healthy physical, social-emotional and intellectual development of every child. Unfortunately, many children across America suffer from poor oral health and lack of access to oral health care." "Our goal is to work with HS/EHS program officials, partners and consultants to maximize the expertise and unique resources that each partner brings to the Dental Home Initiative," said Dr. Crall. "AAPD believes that these strategic activities will complement and supplement recent HS/EHS oral health efforts and supply a critical missing component-networks of dentists capable of providing quality dental homes that meet the full range of oral health needs for these infants and children."

Kids in Medicaid have more tooth decay. An estimated 6.5 million U.S. children cared for through the Medicaid public health insurance program have untreated tooth decay, according to a report released on September 24. Only about a third of the 20 million children covered by Medicaid had any dental care at all in the past year, according to the report from the Government Accountability Office.
"Children in Medicaid remain at higher risk of dental disease compared to children with private health insurance; children in Medicaid were almost twice as likely to have untreated tooth decay," the GAO report reads.
 
National Children's Dental Health Month. The 2009 National Children's Dental Health Month program posters are now available for shipping to your program.  The upcoming campaign features the continuing adventures of the Tough Tooth Team. One side of the poster (for younger kids) features the Team springing into action to achieve maximum smile power with the slogan, "Turn Up Your Smile Power!"  The other side features a healthy smile message for teens with the slogan, "Power Up Your Smile!". The NCDHM Program Planning Guide offers program coordinators resources to promote the benefits of good oral health to children. The guide includes easy-to-do activities, program planning timetable tips, sample press releases and much, much more. The guide is available for download at www.ada.org/goto/ncdhm.   
There is also a quantity of posters in Spanish available. To view the posters please visit the NCDHM website
 
Why do Women get More Cavities Than Men? 
Reproduction pressures and rising fertility explain why women suffered a more rapid decline in dental health than did men as humans transitioned from hunter-and-gatherers to farmers and more sedentary pursuits, says a University of Oregon anthropologist. The conclusion follows a comprehensive review of records of the frequencies of dental cavities in both prehistoric and living human populations from research done around the world. A driving factor was dramatic changes in female-specific hormones, reports John R Lukacs, a professor of anthropology who specializes in dental, skeletal and nutritional issues.   
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Dental Providers Have a Role to Play.
 
The National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center (OHRC) is sharing resources on domestic violence to help others learn more about this important topic.
 
A Web-based "portal" of materials on domestic violence and oral health is available on OHRC's Web site A-Z page.  Click on "D" for Domestic violence and then click on "library" to see a list of resources on domestic violence, including child abuse.
Sadie & Harry Davis Foundation Grant Opportunity 
The Sadie and Harry Davis Foundation announces a grant opportunity for programs that advance the health of Maine children. Proposals are due on November 15, 2008. This RFP is for any facet of children's health, there is no preference given to oral health. For grant guidelines and application procedures, please email the Foundation's Executive Director, Sharon L. Rosen, at slrosen@sadieandharrydavis.org or visit the Maine Public Health Association for the full guiding document.
MDAC News
Next meeting: December 6, 2008 
mdac logoin Augusta, at MCD  at 9:00 AM 
 
 
 
 
Become a Word of Mouth Contributor  
 If your organization has an event or an accomplishment you would like to share please send it on. If there are oral health issues and policies you would like to  to see addressed in this forum, let us know.
The mission of the Maine Dental Access Coalition is to advocate for and improve access to quality preventative  and comprehensive oral health care  for all Maine residents.
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