Since 2006, Arrowhead Early Head Start has delivered Caries Away!, an oral health initiative focusing on low-income, high-risk infants, toddlers, and pregnant women across rural northeastern Minnesota.
Families receive individualized anticipatory guidance related to oral health. They are also taught how to correctly use oral hygiene products and regularly receive these supplies for every family member. Arrowhead Economic Opportunity Agency has fostered professional relationships with several local dentists to secure “dental homes” for children, ages birth to three years, who would otherwise go without seeing a dentist.
Over 1,800 children have received fluoride varnish and oral health screenings through an in-house preventive fluoride varnish program and 100% of Arrowhead Early Head Start families have received oral health education and hygiene supplies since Caries Away! began.