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Entries in Dental Treatments (6)


NH DHHS - Do New Hampshire Seniors Have a Reason to Smile?

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services

(DHHS), Division of Public Health Services, Oral Health Program has

released the results of the 2014 Oral Health Survey of New Hampshire Older

Adults that are based on data collected at 25 Senior Centers and Congregate

Meal Sites in our State and the news is compelling. Altogether, 18.9% of

older adults are in need of early or urgent dental care that may be

difficult to access particularly due to financial and transportation

issues. The National Association of Chronic Disease Directors funded this

survey of adults aged 60 and older and the New Hampshire Bureau of Elderly

and Adult Services (BEAS) provided funding from its Title IIID Older

Americans Act allocation for all dental treatment referrals resulting from

the survey. Altogether, 610 adults 60 years of age and older were screened;

38 of these received restorative treatment using BEAS funds.

The results of this survey provide important insights into the dental needs

of our older residents who remain active and live independently. Collected

data show that only 18.4% of older adults have some type of dental

insurance to help pay for routine dental care, 28.0% of older adults have

no functional top to bottom tooth contact, which affects proper chewing,

and 15.9% of older adults have lost all of their natural teeth, which

greatly impacts their quality of life and well being. Approximately 5.2% of

individuals with no teeth have no dentures, which interferes with eating

and daily functioning. Similarly, 25.4% of older adults have untreated

decay or root fragments, and 6.8% are in need of periodontal care. The

report reveals that there are significant geographic and socioeconomic

disparities in our State. Older residents living in rural areas and those

with lower incomes have a significantly greater unmet need for dental care.

“Oral diseases and conditions are common among our New Hampshire seniors,”

said Dr. José Montero, Director of Public Health at DHHS, “many of whom

grew up without the benefit of community water fluoridation and other

fluoride products. This survey illustrates that New Hampshire seniors with

the poorest oral health are those who are economically disadvantaged and

live in the most rural parts of our State. This is not a cosmetic issue.

Our seniors have conditions that impact their ability to eat and may impact

their overall health."

The collected data help to identify gaps in service delivery to older

adults who represent a substantial proportion of the State’s population. In

fact, the current number of New Hampshire adults 65 years old and older is

about 200,000. The Oral Health Program has received federal funding for two

new dental facilities in health centers located in rural New Hampshire.

Oral health care will be integrated into medical care for underserved rural

residents, including older adults with a greater unmet need for dental

care. A similar survey will track the progress in the future. To view the

full report, visit


NH DHHS - Healthy Smiles–Healthy Growth Report

Comparison Findings of the New Hampshire 2013–2014 Healthy Smiles–Healthy

Growth Third Grade Survey Show Dramatic Decrease in

Obesity and Tooth Decay

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services

(DHHS), Division of Public Health Services (DPHS) has compared the results

of the 2013–2014 Healthy Smiles–Healthy Growth Third Grade Survey with the

2008–2009 survey and finds improvements have been made. The statewide

survey was funded by the HNH Foundation and Northeast Delta Dental. The

data show a marked improvement over the last five years and demonstrate

progress in reducing health disparities in both obesity and oral health

status. Data were collected at public elementary schools in each county

throughout New Hampshire. The Nashua Division of Public Health and

Community Services coordinated data collection for the City.

When compared with the 2008–09 survey DPHS found:


- 30% decrease statewide in obesity prevalence

- 34.8% decrease in obesity among students in schools that have more than

50% of students eligible for Free or Reduced Lunch

- 46% reduction in schools that have 25% or less students who qualify for

Free or Reduced Lunch

- 37% decrease in boys

Oral Health

- 54.4% decrease in untreated decay in Coos County

- 31.7% decrease in untreated tooth decay statewide

- 32.5% decrease in children with immediate dental needs

- 20.4% increase in dental sealants in schools with more than 50% of

students who qualify for Free or Reduced Lunch

“The findings support the collaborative efforts that took place across the

State beginning in 2008,” said Dr. José Montero, Director of Public Health

at DHHS. “We are very excited to see large improvements in obesity and

dental sealants in schools that have high eligibility for Free or Reduced

Lunch and a decrease in untreated tooth decay in Coos County. In order to

sustain these improvements and further reduce health disparities,

businesses, private foundations, community organizations, and government

are working together to target resources and strategies. This will have a

collective impact and improve the health of the people in New Hampshire.

This is exciting progress and is the result of efforts by many partners

from parents to schools to dental health professionals, nutrition and

physical activity advocates, all designed to target efforts in areas where

worse health outcomes exist.”

Beginning in 2008, DPHS was awarded a five-year $2.2 million CDC grant to

establish an Obesity Prevention Program (OPP). OPP supported Healthy Eating

Active Living (HEAL) NH by providing assistance and resources to schools,

worksites, and communities. Additionally OPP focused efforts in child care

settings training over 300 child care providers to improve nutrition and

physical activity in their programs. Other key partners included HEAL NH,

the Foundation for Healthy Communities, the NH Department of Transportation

Safe Routes to School Program, NH Regional Planning Commissions, and the NH

Child Development Bureau.

The Oral Health Program in the Division of Public Health Services has

worked with many external partners to target interventions in areas with

oral health disparities found in the 2008–2009 survey. The 54.4% decrease

in untreated decay in Coos County and the 20.4% increase in dental sealants

in schools with more than 50% of students who qualify for Free or Reduced

Lunch demonstrate that targeted efforts can result in significant


The HNH Foundation and Northeast Delta Dental Foundation provided funding

for data collection, while the Association of State and Territorial Dental

Directors contributed technical assistance for the sampling and data

analysis of the Third Grade Survey. The purpose of the survey was to gather

representative data on oral health and height/weight status for third grade

students statewide.

The complete New Hampshire 2013–2014 Healthy Smiles–Healthy Growth Third

Grade Survey is available on the DHHS website.


NEW HAMPSHIRE – October 8, 2014 – Online registration is open through October 15 for the 2014 NH Oral Health Forum co-sponsored by the NH Oral Health Coalition and the Bi-State Primary Care Association.  This year’s event will be held Friday, October 17 at the Concord, NH Holiday Inn.  A preview of the agenda and speakers is available at:  Registration is required. 

Marko Vujicic, Ph.D., managing vice president of the Health Policy Resource Center at the American Dental Association, will deliver the keynote address, “A Profession in Transition – What Every Dentist Needs to Know about Tomorrow’s Practice Environment.” This presentation is sponsored by the Concord-based Endowment for Health and Northeast Delta Dental.   Previously, Dr. Vujicic was a Health Economist with the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland, where he was part of a team responsible for policy research and support to Ministries of Health in developing countries.  He is the lead author of Working in Health: Financing and Managing the Public Sector Health Workforce, as well as several publications in academic journals.  Sharing the podium with Dr. Vujicic will be Margaret Snow, DMD, MPH, MBA, NH’s Dental Director providing an update on the state’s proposed Medicaid Waiver and the national consensus statement on oral health during pregnancy.  Additional panels highlighting NH’s community-based oral health providers will address public health oral health practice and medical-dental integration in traditional and non-traditional settings.    

The Forum is an interdisciplinary professional collaboration with additional sponsorships provided by the NH Dental Society Foundation and the NH Pediatric Society plus funds provided in part by the state of NH and the US Department of Health and Human Services.  Operational and program funding to help support this program has been provided by the HNH Foundation, the Endowment for Health, and the DentaQuest Foundation. 

The NH Oral Health Coalition is a diverse group of organizations, agencies, and individuals, concerned about the impact of oral health issues facing New Hampshire.  This group is broadly representative of those involved in oral health provision, planning and funding.  The NH Public Health Association, a 501(c)3(h), serves as fiscal sponsor for the Coalition.  

Bi-State Primary Care Association is a nonpartisan, nonprofit 501(c)3 charitable organization that promotes access to effective and affordable primary care and preventive services for all, with special emphasis on underserved populations in Vermont and New Hampshire.    


NH DHHS - Awards to Be Presented to Three Municipalities for Fluoridation Efforts

The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), Division

of Public Health Services (DPHS) is honoring the City of Concord Water

Treatment, the Laconia Water Works, and the Lebanon Water Department with a

Water Fluoridation Quality Award from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control

and Prevention (CDC) for excellence in community water fluoridation to

decrease the rate of tooth decay in their communities.

WHEN: Friday, March 14, 2014 at 9:00 AM

WHERE: City of Concord Water Treatment Plant

53 Hutchins Street

Concord, NH

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NH DHHS Promotes New Recommendations in Recognition of Children’s Dental Health Month

Concord, NH - The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services, in

recognition of February as Children’s Dental Health Month, reminds parents

and providers that children should receive their first oral health check up

before one year of age, and remember to brush twice a day for 2 minutes

each time—think “2x2.”

Tooth decay is almost entirely preventable. Tooth decay is the most

widespread chronic childhood disease and can cause a lifetime of problems

if not prevented or treated early in a child’s life. Untreated cavities may

lead to pain and infection, and when children suffer from oral health

problems so does their ability to concentrate and learn. Early tooth loss

from dental decay can cause impaired speech development, absence from

school, difficulty with concentration, and reduced self-esteem.

The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Pediatric

Dentistry recommend that children begin regular oral exams when their first

teeth become visible or by one year of age. New Hampshire Medicaid and many

other dental insurance programs cover the cost of these examinations.

“These are problems that can be easily prevented by taking care of

children’s mouths and teeth from the time they are infants,” said Dr. José

Montero, Director of Public Health at DHHS. “It‘s an investment that lasts

a lifetime. The National Partnership for Healthy Mouths has created the new

2x2 initiative that makes it easier for parents and caregivers to remember

this important part of preventing oral health problems during our busy


Here are important steps to take to help preserve dental health in


Brush and floss children’s teeth 2 times a day.

Use a toothpaste with fluoride.

Give fluoride prescribed by your health care provider if your water

supply doesn’t have the right amount of fluoride to protect a child’s


If using a pacifier, do not dip it in anything sweet such as honey or


Clean an infant’s teeth and gums every day, especially after feeding

and before bed.

Have regular dental checkups, starting before age one.

Do not give infants juice until 12 months of age, and always use a

cup and not a bottle for juice.

Never put a baby to bed with a bottle.

Don’t let your child catch the bacteria that cause tooth decay by

sharing food, utensils, or toys with others.

Avoid sticky snacks, dried fruits, candy, and sweetened drinks. Offer

healthy snacks, such as fresh fruits and vegetables.

Follow your health care provider’s advice.

For more information on the “2 minutes, 2 times” national campaign, visit For resources on celebrating National Children’s Dental

Health Month, go to the American Dental Association’s website at To learn about the New Hampshire Oral Health

Program go to or call

271-4535. Families with preschool children may be eligible for the WIC

Nutrition Program and to receive nutrition education about healthy meals

and snacks for infants and preschoolers. Contact WIC at 1-800-942-4321 or