There is an epidemic of tooth decay in the United States. The Center for Disease Control reports that 28% of children between the ages of 2 to 5 years have cavities. In addition, there are 30,000 new cases of adult oral cancer diagnosed each year, leading to more than 8,000 deaths annually.
Oral health is an integral part of overall health. According to a Dental Health Foundation study, rotten teeth or abscesses lead to other health risks such as kidney and liver infections. Among adults, 75% of tooth loss is due to periodontal (gum) disease, which has also been linked to stroke, heart disease, uncontrolled diabetes, respiratory infections, and even preterm births or low-birth-weight babies.
According to Oral Health America, an independent advocacy organization, 51 million school hours are lost because of dental-related illnesses in children. There are no firm statistics on how many work hours are lost when employees must take sick time to care for their children, but the wasted time must be substantial--not to mention the time that workers must take off to deal with their own dental health issues.
The Goofy Toofy mission is to inform and educate on oral hygiene to motivate and encourage positive behavior and self-care, and to offer a pleasant and nurturing environment in which to learn about the value of a smile.
The Goofy Toofy instructional DVD provides solid information on the benefits of good oral health for children and the adults who care for them. It is especially effective in motivating older children and teens to brush and floss. The DVD is available now in English and Spanish.
Shelia will soon publish materials designed to supplement and reinforce the information provided in the DVD. The Goofy Toofy Adult Instruction Booklet will help adults improve their own dental care regimen and also model correct skills and a positive attitude for the children in their lives. Goofy Toofy Children's Activity Books K-3 and 4-6 will use cartoon characters to illustrate the risks of poor dental hygiene and the benefits of good dental habits in a fun and educational way. Shelia is also working on a cartoon-based version of these materials for teens.
In addition to these publications, Shelia offers educational presentations for businesses and schools to motivate, inspire, educate, empower, and change behavior towards oral health.