The Early Childhood Dental Network-SW (ECDN-SW) is an 18-county, multi-disciplinary collaborative project, and an expansion of the 16 Early Childhood Initiative (ECI) communities in southwest Minnesota.
It is designed to increase awareness and education to all children and their caregivers about the importance of oral health, and to promote accessing dental care, specifically to the 0-5 population on Minnesota Health Care Programs or the uninsured. In partnership with the Otto Bremer Foundation, ECDN-SW launched during fall 2013.
To improve awareness, education, and access to oral health in southwest Minnesota for all children ages 0 to 5.
The ECDN-SW’s greatest strength lies in the partnerships it develops. Through these collaborations, the ECDN-SW will be able to:
- Bridge gaps in services;
- Work on the strengths of the region and each partner agency;
- Determine high impact strategies to build further capacity within the region;
- Make a difference in the oral health of our communities.
- Primary Goals
- Improve access to timely, appropriate and affordable dental care in rural southwestern Minnesota, with a focus on children ages birth-five years.
- Develop community based models that increase awareness and education for parents, children, and the community about the importance of good oral health for children.
- Developing and implementing a variety of fun, educational oral health trainings and materials.
- Supporting partners to include oral health materials in Early Childhood Screening backpacks.
- Bringing partners together to schedule regular mobile dental unit visits in Southwest Minnesota.
- Distributing educational and informational display boards to local and regional partners to include at county fairs, resource fairs, clinics, and many other public locations.
- Providing partners access to free toothbrushes to distribute to children ages 2-4 across the region.
Resources and Links
Southwest Initiative Foundation Materials
- ADA Primary Tooth Eruption Chart
- Child Oral Health Poster (English/Spanish)
- Fluoride Varnish Poster (English/Spanish)
- A Healthy Smile for Your Baby Brochure (English/Spanish)
- A Health Smile for Your Young Child Brochure (English/Spanish)
- Two Healthy Smiles (English/Spanish)
- Tips for Good Oral Health During Pregnancy
- Rethink Your Drink Poster (English)
Rethink Your Drink Poster (Spanish)
- Healthy Habits for Happy Smiles
- National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center (OHRC)
- Think Teeth
- Oral Health Resources for Spanish-Speaking Families
- Brush Up on Oral Health Newsletters