March 2021

Children’s Dental Health Month

How Cigna celebrated Children’s Dental Health Month in February.

Children’s Dental Health Month is a month-long national health observance celebrated by Cigna and the American Dental Association (ADA). Each year, Cigna promotes the importance of children’s oral health to our clients, our customers and the general public. The ADA said it best: “Children’s Dental Health Month brings together thousands of dedicated professionals, health care providers, and educators to promote the benefits of good oral health to children, their caregivers, teachers and many others.”

This year, to spread awareness, Cigna Dental shared several resources, including educational emails, a kids-friendly flyer with a coloring activity on the back and a video featuring Dr. Deborah Fuller, Cigna's National Dental Director. Additionally, we partnered with Blessings in a Backpack, a non-profit organization, to provide backpacks filled with nutritious food for children in need, as well as more than 2,000 dental hygiene kits filled with a toothbrush, toothpaste squeezers, floss and flyers.

We realize that it’s easy for kids’ dental check-ups to get lost in everything that’s happened over the past year, but it’s important for parents to make them a priority – not just for their kids’ oral health but for their overall health, too. Oral hygiene impacts a lot more than you’d think, including school absences and self-confidence.

The cost-saving advantages of proper dental care.

Keeping up with preventive care can also save employees money: Cigna Dental customers who get preventive care have 31% lower dental costs than those who don’t.1 It doesn’t stop there. In fact, kids who get dental check-ups have:

  • Increased self-confidence2 and resilience3
  • Fewer missed schools days (kids in the U.S. miss more than 34 million hours of school due to dental problems4, and kids with poor oral health are nearly three times more likely to miss school due to dental pain5)
  • 23% fewer emergency room visits6

Simple steps toward better oral health.

In addition to getting regular cleanings and X-rays, there are many ways kids can improve their oral health right at home. Simple everyday habits build up over time. Here are just a few things that we recommend incorporating into kids’ every day routine:

  • Brushing twice a day for two minutes with a fluoride toothpaste
  • Reducing sugars
  • Encouraging healthy snacks

Here’s more information on how dental care can help employees and their families.

Newsroom Article

Download our kids-friendly flyer in case you missed it.

  1. National Cigna study. “Long-term Dental Care and Its Impact on Dental Costs.” Completed August 2018.
  2. “Exploring the relationship between oral health and mental wellbeing.” Cigna research study, October 2019.
  3. Development of Resilience Links Parenting and Childhood Dental Caries, International Association for Dental Research, 2020.
  4. Naavaal S, and Kelekar U. School Hours Lost Due to Acute/Unplanned Dental Care. Health Behav Policy Rev 2018;5(2):66-73.
  5. The State of Dental Health. Children’s Dental Health Project,
  6. “Preventive Dental Treatment Associated with Lower Medical Utilization and Costs.” National Cigna study, 2018.