School is officially back in session!
As a parent, you want to give your child all the resources possible to do well in school. This can range from helping them with their homework to supporting their academic interests. One other surprising way you can set them up for success is to encourage good oral health habits.
As far fetched as this may seem, research suggests that children are more likely to do well in school when they have a healthy smile. So, how is dental health related to academic performance? The state of your child’s oral health can affect their school performance in three major ways:
The most common reasons your child’s oral health will affect their grades can be one or more of the following reasons:
Missed School Days: The most obvious consequence of poor dental health can be the missed school days. According to a study from the Ostrow School of Dentistry at the University of Southern California, dental problems can cause a significant number of absences from school. Researchers looked at nearly 1,500 students from the Los Angeles Unified School District and found that elementary students missed 2.1 days of school due to dental issues while high schoolers missed 2.3 days on average.
With these absences from school, students are more likely to fall behind, resulting in poor academic performance. According to researchers, parents of students can also suffer and miss an average of 2.5 days of work per year to deal with their child’s dental problems.
Poor Concentration and Grades: Along with students falling behind due to dental problems, they are also more likely to struggle with concentration. Pain from dental problems can range from mild discomfort to agonizing pain, which can seriously hinder a student’s ability to concentrate. This distraction from dental pain can eventually take a toll on their academic performance. The same study from the Ostrow School of Dentistry also found that children who reported having tooth pain were four times more likely to have a low grade point average when compared to children without tooth pain.
Lower Happiness and Motivation: Dealing with dental problems can also lower your child’s happiness and confidence. In turn, dental problems will hinder their quality of life both inside and outside the classroom. A study published in the Journal of Applied Science looked at the relationship between self-esteem and academic achievement and found that high self-esteem is an important factor that predicts academic achievement in students.
Set your child up for success by encouraging them to take care of their dental health! Is your child due for a dental appointment? We’ve got you covered!
Here at our Palm Harbor office, we offer a variety of services to best treat your child’s smile. To learn more, contact our office today and schedule your next appointment with Dr. Paul Caputo!
Paul L. Caputo, DDS3490 E Lake Rd S Suite A