Health Topics & Information

Dental Health

There is a strong relationship between your oral health and your overall health. Here are some good practices to follow to ensure proper oral hygiene.

Practicing and maintaining good oral health means taking care of all the parts of your mouth, including your teeth and gums. There is a strong relationship between your oral health and your overall health. Here are some good practices to follow to ensure proper oral hygiene:

  • Floss everyday
  • Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste
  • Visit your dentist at least once a year
  • Examine your mouth everyday
  • Avoid smoking
  • Don’t eat too many sweets

Recommended preventive dental care frequency (from the NYC Department of Health & Mental Health):

  • Children: A child’s first dental exam should occur around the time of the child’s first tooth and no later than 12 months (1 year) of age. Then the child needs a dental checkup every 6 months or as determined by the child’s dentist. For children under 7 years of age, ask the dentist or primary care doctor about fluoride varnish.
  • Pregnant women: Pregnant women should see a dentist at least one time during pregnancy. Necessary treatment can be provided throughout pregnancy.
  • Adults: Adults should establish a dental home and see the dentist as often as the dentist recommends.
  • Examine your mouth everyday
  • Avoid smoking
  • Don’t eat too many sweets

If you or your child has any of these early warning signs of tooth decay, contact your dentist.

  • Small white spots on teeth
  • Swelling of the face
  • Tiny holes in enamel
  • Pain in mouth
  • Tooth sensitivity to heat, cold or sweets
  • Tooth pain or sensitivity when chewing

Child Health Plus cover routine, preventive and emergency dental services through Healthplex. You do not need a referral from your PCP to see a dentist. To choose a Primary Care Dentist (PCD) or if you need help finding a dentist in your area, call Healthplex at 1-888-468-2189.

Medicaid members can access dental care using their MetroPlusHealth ID card. Your benefits include dental check-ups, cleaning, x-rays, fillings and follow-up care. You do not need a referral from your PCP to see a dentist. To choose a Primary Care Dentist (PCD) or if you need help finding a dentist in your area, call Healthplex at 1-888-468-2189.

Helpful Resources:

Covid Outreach Flyer
Taking Care of Your Teeth
last updated: April 26, 2022

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