Child Oral Health

Your mouth is a window to your overall health. Sometimes the first sign of a disease shows up in your mouth. In other cases, infections in your mouth, such as gum disease or tooth decay, can cause problems in other areas of your body.

That is why it’s so important that young children see a dentist - so the dentist can provide parents with information on children’s oral hygiene and conditions like children’s cavities, gum disease, and tooth decay can be prevented or treated while in its earliest stages.

Many children lack access to dental care, however, which is a critical component in achieving good oral health. PCCY works to improve the oral health of the regions children by engaging in multiple, interconnected efforts to improve children’s access to oral health care services.

Oral Health Resource Guide

PCCY has developed a guide to help parents, counselors, health care providers and others who care for children access oral health care resources in Philadelphia. The guide lists over 50 practices in the city that provide services to children. Resource guides are printed in both English and Spanish.

Oral Health Resource Guide -
A Guide to Oral Health Services for Philadelphia's Children and Adolescents.
Download PDF

Oral Health Resource Guide - Spanish Edition -
A Guide to Oral Health Services for Philadelphia's Children and Adolescents.
Download PDF

Southeast PA Oral Health Task Force

PCCY facilitates the Southeast PA Oral Health Task Force comprised of a cross-section of stakeholders – including local dentists, hygienists and other professionals who work in dental offices, the Dental Director of PA’s Medicaid agency, Philadelphia School District personnel, and representatives from Medicaid and CHIP insurance companies, Temple and Penn dental schools and child care advocates. The Task Force collaborates on a variety of initiatives to reach the goal of connecting children to oral health care services.

Give Kids a Smile Day

Give Kids A Smile Day - FREE dental care will be available for children in the Upper Darby, Havertown and West Philadelphia areas on Wednesday, April 16th and Friday, April 18th, 2014 (some students will be off from school). This special event is especially for children who have not had a dental exam in the last six months or who do not have health insurance. Participating dentists will provide free screenings and cleanings. Please call 215-563-5848215-563-5848 x32 to schedule an appointment.

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The ultimate goal of Smile Day is for families to find a dental home for their children.

In the past our focus was the City of Philadelphia, but this year our efforts will be directed toward children and youth in the Upper Darby, PA area. We are partnering with the Upper Darby, William Penn and Southeast Delco School Districts to address the growing need for dental services in their community and to get the word out to students and their families.

Children will be able to go to participating dentists’ offices and receive free screenings and cleanings.

School-based Oral Health Services

The state requires students in specific grades to receive an oral health care screening. In order to increase screenings among Philadelphia School District students and connect them to dental care, PCCY works with the Task Force and the Philadelphia School District to help facilitate a cadre of providers deliver dental care to kids in their school. Currently, there are five providers covering all of the schools in the district providing a range of on-site school-based services from screening and sealants to treating dental problems.

PCCY Oral Health Initiatives

In June 2009, the American Dental Association invited PCCY and its partners to serve as keynote speakers at its Give Kids a Smile Day Promising Practices Symposium to discuss the variety of children’s oral health initiatives in Philadelphia. Click on the link below to view the Power Point Presentation.

Download Power Point Presentation

For more information and to get involved please contact Colleen McCauley at