by Dr. Brent Gill, Columbia Basin and Orchard Hills
Cavity free! As a pediatric dentist that is my favorite
diagnosis for kids and their parents. After January 1st it
may be easier for parents to get the regular check ups, x-rays and
cleanings their child needs, and to hear those words at their
child's next visit to the dentist.
One of the many changes to health insurance coverage is a
Washington state requirement that kids have dental insurance
coverage as of January 1, 2014. Data recently released from
the state shows there are already 54,000 children enrolled in
Washington who now have a pediatric dental benefit and this number
is sure to grow.
Oral health is important to your child's overall
quality of life. Simple things like brushing
teeth two minutes, two times a day
, and seeing a dentist
for regular check-ups - are part of a healthy routine to keep your
child cavity and pain free.
are simple measures that can prevent pain and lower your
There are several ways for parents to make sure their child is
covered; through an employer provided dental plan, through
purchasing a pediatric dental plan on Washington's Healthplanfinder
also known as the exchange; through the individual or small
business market (ie: through an insurance broker); or families who
qualify may get coverage through Apple Health for Kids.
To help parents find a dentist to see their child, the Washington
State Dental Association has established "Dental Referral Program
for Children" (DRC). Parents can call1-877-239-1011
or visit www.wsda.org/children
to get the names of several dentists in their community that take
the insurance plan they have chosen.
Oral disease is almost 100% preventable, yet dental decay or
cavities is the most common chronic disease affecting
children. In Washington, 58% of third graders have
experienced a cavity. Regular brushing and regular visits to
the dentist may help us turn those statistics around.