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Feb. 4, Morningside: All About Developmental Disabilities Kicks Off Dental Health Care and Prevention Initiative

Initiative Focuses on Importance of Preventing, Identifying, Treating Dental Problems in People with Developmental Disabilities

WHEN: Thursday, Feb. 4, 2016, 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

WHERE: Rock Springs Presbyterian Church, Loudermilk Center, 1824 Piedmont Ave., Atlanta 30324, 404-875-7483

WHAT: On Feb. 4, All About Developmental Disabilities (AADD) kicks off their dental health care and access initiative with a public event focusing on best dental practices for Georgians with developmental disabilities.

For them and their families, everyday tasks can be immensely challenging, including brushing teeth and flossing. Yet a small dental problem can become devastating if not treated. Dental hygiene issues can range from slight challenges with daily brushing and flossing to more complex dental issues requiring major intervention.

To help combat these issues, AADD is hosting this public event to educate Georgians with developmental disabilities and their caregivers in the best ways to prevent dental problems. With free food, games and giveaways to make the event fun, organizers will deliver the message of the importance of good dental hygiene.

Examples of dental care issues for those with developmental disabilities include:

  • Muscle control: Someone with cerebral palsy or other physical disability might lack the necessary muscle control to brush properly
  • Physical traits: Some developmental disabilities include physical traits that impact dental health; for instance, Down Syndrome causes soft teeth more prone to cavities
  • Intellectual disorders: People with autism and other intellectual disorders may dislike the sensations associated with dental care and resist brushing and flossing
  • Poor diet can have a significant impact on dental health

The long-term impact of neglecting dental hygiene can cause more damage than a simple cleaning can repair.

  • Tooth loss requiring bridges or dentures, periodontal and jaw surgery, heart disease, and even death are all potential -- and preventable -- consequences of neglected dental care.
  • Patients must often seek care at a dentist specializing in developmental disabilities, requiring additional services like anesthesia, which can add significantly to the cost.

INTERVIEWS

  • Kathy Keeley, Executive Director, AADD, kathy@aadd.org, Cell Phone: 404-219-7620
  • Monica Manns, Program Development and Implementation Officer, Cell Phone: 404-469-9337
  • Patient families to discuss their dental problems and solutions

Contact: Beth Wieder, Leff & Associates, 404-323-0683, beth@leffassociates.com 

Mitch Leff, Leff & Associates, (404) 861-4769, mitch@leffassociates.com