Education Just For You - Dental Providers

Girl at dentist

Cavities start early. 

Recommend a dental visit by age 1.

The entire dental team – dentists, dental hygienists, dental assistants, and office administrators – all play a role in the oral health of Iowans. It is important that children begin to receive dental care as soon as teeth erupt, making their first dental visit before their first birthday. Access to preventive care, like fluoride varnish, dental sealants, and optimal fluoridated water, are other ways we can keep children healthy and decrease health care costs. Starting life with good oral health will translate into a lifetime of good oral health and healthy habits.

What can I-Smile do for Dental Providers?

The goal of I-Smile is to ensure that children have a dental home. Local I-Smile coordinators are community liaisons between families, dental offices, medical offices, schools, Head Start, child care centers, businesses, and civic organizations building networks that help children access dental care.

I-Smile coordinators work with families, especially those that have difficulty accessing a dental office, to educate on the importance of regular dental care. Coordinators address barriers by helping schedule appointments, find transportation, provide interpreters, and identify payment sources for dental care.   

I-Smile coordinators provide lunch and learn opportunities for dental offices on the I-Smile initiative and how you can be part of a network that helps your community. Coordinators can answer questions about Iowa’s school dental screening requirement or the dental component of hawk-i insurance. Additionally, your local I-Smile coordinator has current information on your community's fluoride levels and will help address local community water fluoridation concerns as they arise.

How can dental providers help?

Get to know your local I-Smile coordinator! You and your I-Smile coordinator can identify the best ways to refer families to your office as well as other ways that you can work together to keep Iowans healthy.


 School Screening Information

Fact Sheets

Did You Know?

The American Dental Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics both recommend that a child should have their first dental visit by their first birthday.