Kool Smiles is coordinating for the second year a program designed to give kids’ teeth a post-Halloween break. Called Operation Troop Treats, the program encourages children to exchange candy for a toy.
The candy will then be sent in care packages to U.S. troops serving overseas via Operation Gratitude.
The Terre Haute office, at 1800 Fort Harrison Road, is participating from Friday to Nov. 6 during open office hours. Each child can receive one toy for every 25 pieces of unopened candy in its original intended packaging.
The program is open to everyone, regardless of whether they are a Kool Smiles patient. There is a limit of three toys per child, and toys will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis. In 2012, 79 pounds of candy was collected from the Terre Haute office.
“An overload of treats can do some damage on kids’ teeth,” said Polly Boehlein, Kool Smiles managing dental director for Indiana.. “Around Halloween, children are consuming more candy and with this increased frequency of sugary and sticky candies, many kids are increasing their risk of getting cavities or making existing oral health problems worse.
“This program not only raises awareness of good dental hygiene and encourages parents and children to reduce the amount of sugar they are exposing their teeth to, but it also hopefully uplifts our armed forces serving abroad who will receive Halloween candy-filled care packages, along with dental kits and oral health guides … .”
While brushing twice daily and getting regular dental checkups is important for people of all ages, Halloween is a good time for parents to pay close attention to their children’s dental health.
For more information, visit www.mykoolsmiles.com/trooptreats.