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February is full of reasons to smile. Of course there’s Valentine’s Day and all the sweet moments that come with a special day to tell our kids, spouses, partners, and friends how much we love them. Then, there is Presidents’ Day which gives us a chance to introduce kids to great men who have led our country (and, yes, hit some great sales, too) and Black History Month which reminds us to celebrate the diversity of the people who built the country. Another big reason to smile in February is to honor Children’s Dental Health Month.

Research has proven that a smile is contagious and that the act of smiling can actually lift your mood and make you feel happier. But if you aren’t confident about your teeth, smiling can be a challenge. Experts agree that the best way to build good dental health is to start when kids are young—around 12 to18 months. Teaching kids proper dental care at home and getting them in the habit of visiting the dentist every six months sets them firmly on a path to healthy teeth and a confident smile—one that could actually contribute to their success in life. (According to one study, successful people weren’t necessarily smiling because they were successful, but rather, they were successful because they tended to smile more.)

In this issue, you will find our annual Top Dentists list along with little “bites” of information about children’s dental health. Learn about a new method for treating kids’ cavities that doesn’t require drilling, pick up expert tips for taking care of little teeth, and more.

If you are looking for a hands-on activity that will make your kids smile, try a simple but impressive paper marbling craft. And don’t miss our article on choosing the right camp for your child. Summer camp registration is already underway, and having happy, occupied kids this summer will definitely keep you smiling, too.

Family Food

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