Dental Visits for Children

Have you taken your child to the dentist?

The American Dental Association and American Academy of Pediatrics both recommend that your infant begin visiting the dentist by age 1. Seeing a dentist early is all about prevention. Today’s dental teams can cultivate and protect your child’s smile by identifying risk factors and behaviors that could spell trouble in the future. Most parents are shocked to discover that too much fruit juice and inadequate oral hygiene can result in significant decay by 2 to 3.

Start building the best foundation for your child’s oral health and overall health by taking your child to the dentist six months after the first tooth comes in, or by your child’s first birthday. Establishing a ‘Dental Home’ by 1 may eliminate the need for dental fillings by 2.

For a listing of local dentists that accept Healthy Kids Dental please see this list!

Montcalm County Healthy Kids Dental Providers 2017

Dear Safe to Sleep® Community:

As many of you may know, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Task Force on SIDS recently updated its recommendations for safe infant sleep. The article, SIDS and Other Sleep-Related Infant Deaths: Updated 2016 Recommendations for a Safe Infant Sleeping Environment, External Web Site Policy draws on new research and serves as the first update to Academy policy since 2011.

NICHD’s Deputy Director, Dr. Cathy Spong, participated in an AAP press event External Web Site Policy during which AAP members and Dr. Spong reviewed the recommendations and research that informed the updates. During the press conference, Dr. Spong mentioned that she understands “the challenges of keeping babies healthy and safe not only as a mother of four, but also as a physician.” Dr. Spong continued, “Like other new parents and expectant families, I want to know what is best for my children and, especially, what I can do to help keep them healthy and safe.”

Dr. Spong acknowledged the important role that health and allied care service providers play in supporting families to make informed decisions about safe infant sleep. She also reiterated NICHD’s commitment to “continue to reach out to parents, caregivers, and those who interact with parents and caregivers about ways to reduce the risk of SIDS and other sleep-related causes of infant death.”

To reflect the latest evidence-based guidance on safe infant sleep, the Safe to Sleep® campaign updated its educational messages and will begin revising its outreach materials. We expect to have new Safe to Sleep® educational materials ready to ship in early 2017!

Please note that our current materials are still accurate. You may continue to order free copies of any publication we offer.

Learn about our new safe infant sleep messages.

Read the full AAP guidelines in SIDS and Other Sleep-Related Infant Deaths: Updated 2016 Recommendations for a Safe Infant Sleeping Environment. External Web Site Policy

Thank you for your continued efforts to support infant health and safety!

Safe to Sleep® campaign
Office of Communications
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
National Institutes of Health
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

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Amid Rising Inequality, One School Gap Is Narrowing

Recent studies and government reports continue to highlight what many Americans know by their wallets: Rising income differences, debt and stagnant real wages are among the biggest problems besetting the nation.

That economic inequality is reflected in America’s schools, right? Absolutely.

But a study just out shows that the gap in school readiness between rich and poor children entering kindergarten closed significantly — by 10 to 16 percent — from 1998 to 2010. Some ethnic/racial achievement gaps declined as well. Reed the full story below.

The First 1000 Days: Nourishing America’s Future

Research has revealed that 25% of children in the United States, between one and two years of age, do not receive the recommended amount of daily iron, a brain-building nutrient, and 10% of children up to two years old already show signs of being overweight or obese. Recently, “1000 Days”, a leading nonprofit advocacy organization who focuses on improving nutrition for young children in the United States and around the world, released a report that details the foundational role that nutrition plays for young children, how young children and families are faring, and what action might be taken to improve nutritional health in the United States, particularly for children birth to two.
As detailed in this report, helping young children have access to healthy nutrition is essential to helping them develop cognitively, emotionally and physically. Though much of the report focuses on families, it does acknowledge that child care providers have an opportunity to impact children’s nutrition through educating families and exposing young children to healthy options.  To access the report and learn more about the role of nutrition in the lives of infants/toddlers visit :
The First 1,000 Days: Nourishing America’s Future

Tips for Tots – Classroom Environment

Looking for evidence-based strategies for supporting very young children to learn and grow? You may want to check out the Tips for Tots series. Each one-page document features a theme (e.g., Support with Transitions), information about what to expect and why, and strategies for supporting the emotional health and success of infants and toddlers.

Educator Resources

A New DLL Electronic Toolkit for Programs, Early Educators, Child Care Providers, and Families:  released by HHS’ Office of Head Start, includes free resources on supporting the learning and development- including dual language development – of DLLs at home, in early learning settings, and in the community.

The Policy Statement on Supporting the Development of Children Who Are Dual Language Learners in Early Childhood Programs.

USDOE Fact Sheet: Supporting Dual Language Learners in Early Learning Settings.