The Mississippi State Department of Health is assisting Head Start programs to provide preventive dental services and access to care for children enrolled in Head Start.
Tooth decay is the most common chronic disease of childhood. The MSDH Oral Health Division and Mississippi Head Start are teaming up to give smiles back to kids in need by working directly through Head Start centers around the state.
How the program works
A licensed dental hygienist will perform a dental screening for your child at no cost to you or the center. A dental screening may identify a problem or disease condition that needs further evaluation by a dentist. (A dental screening does not take the place of a dental exam, but our program may help you identify a local provider if you do not have one already.) After the screening, your child will receive an application of preventive fluoride varnish. Varnish is a protective coating that is painted on teeth to prevent tooth cavities. It is safe and recommended for use at least two times per year.
How to participate
For your child to receive this service, you must complete and return a dental history and consent form to your child's teacher. The results of your child's screening will be provided to you in writing. If eligible, the Mississippi State Department of Health will bill Medicaid for the fluoride varnish application. Your child's health history and the preventive services provided may also be shared with other dental and health care providers that see your child for care.
Find Out More
For more information about this program, please contact your local Head Start center or call the Mississippi Office of Oral Health at (601) 576-7500.