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Santa Cruz County Health Services Agency
Public Health Department
-- Dental Disease Prevention Program --


 

Community
Announcements & Press Releases
Community Water Fluoridation
Finding an Affordable Dentist

Educational Materials
Brushing for Dental Health
Dental Health Web Resources
Early Dental Care
Flossing for Dental Health
Fluoride Facts
Sealant Information
Sensational Snacks
Tips for a Healthy Smile
Understanding Oral Health
What is Plaque?

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Announcements & Press Releases


Tips for a Healthy Smile

  • Brush your teeth two times a day

  • Floss your teeth once a day

  • Eat healthy food

  • Limit snacking

  • Visit your dentist two times a year

  • Drink fluoridated water

  • Wear a mouth guard when playing sports

  • Only put water in a baby's bottle at bedtime


Finding an Affordable Dentist

Everyone should go to the dentist for a check up at least once a year. Don't wait until you have pain or problems. 

What You Need to Know:

  • Not all dentists work with children. Read the ads in the Yellow Pages under Dentists to find one that will accept children. Call them and ask if they will accept Medi-Cal. If they won't, try another one. Each dentist opens and closes to new patients at different times.

If you have Medi-Cal you may be eligible for dental care under the "Denti-Cal" program. If you currently have Denti-Cal call 1-800-322-6384 to locate a dentist in your area or call a dentist directly and ask if they take Medi-Cal. 

You can also call Denti-Cal if you have questions about what is covered or have concerns about the dental care you receive. When calling, have your social security number, telephone number and street address available.

Dental care is also provided to low-income members of our community
through two nonprofit dental clinics. Dientes Community Dental Clinic and Salud Para La Gente are full service clinics that provide access to care for patients with Denti-Cal or those who have no insurance at all.


What is Plaque?

  • Invisible germs called plaque live in your mouth all the time.
  • Sharing toothbrushes, utensils, cups, and pre-testing food can pass plaque.
  • Plaque forms a sticky layer on the surface to the teeth.
  • When you put sugar in your mouth, the plaque is able to convert it into acids.
  • These acids are powerful enough to dissolve the hard enamel that covers your teeth.
  • Keep in mind that gooey or sticky sweets spend more time sticking to the surface of your teeth.
  • Because sticky and sugary snacks stay in your mouth longer than foods that you quickly chew and swallow, they give your teeth a longer exposure to the acids.
  • Every time you eat a sticky and sugary snack the plaque acids continue to affect your teeth for at least 20 minutes before they are neutralized and can't do any more harm.
  • The more times you eat sugary snacks during the day, the more often you are feeding the germs the energy they need to cause cavities.
  • It is important to brush your teeth well with fluoride toothpaste after you eat sweets.
  • There are many tasty, filling snacks that are less harmful to your teeth than foods loaded with sugars and low in nutritional value.
  • Eating the right foods can help protect your teeth from the plaque and cavities.

Sensational Sensible Snacks

Create
Bean and Veggie Burritos
Whole Grain Crackers with Cheese
Peanut Butter and Banana Sandwiches
Cheese and Fruit Kabobs
Scrambled Eggs with Veggies
Bean Spread with Corn Tortillas
Apple and Tuna Sandwiches
Macaroni and Cheese with Spinach and Zucchini
Apple and Oatmeal

Bake
Top Pizza with Veggies
Banana Bread
Carrot Bread
Corn Bread
Tortilla and Cheese
Whole Grain Breads, Rolls, Cereals & Crackers

Crunch
Pumpkin Seeds
Sunflower Seeds
Soy Nuts
Mix Nuts and Dried Fruit
Pears, Apples
Broccoli, Celery, Carrots
Cucumbers

Munch
Fresh Fruit
Canned Fruits in Natural Juices
Apple Sauce
Cottage Cheese
Yogurt
Custard
Cheese
Tuna Salad
Egg Salad
Chicken Salad
Popcorn

Drink
Fruit Smoothies
Non-Fat Milk
Soy Milk
Water
100% Unsweetened Fruit Juice
Carrot Juice
Tomato Juice

 


Dental Health Web Resources

(Back to the Health Education page)

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   Mailing Address: County of Santa Cruz  Health Services Agency
   1080 Emeline Avenue, Santa Cruz, CA 95060 | Phone: 831 454 4000 | Fax: 831 454 4770
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