The dangers of dental caries and how to prevent them are emphasized in this film. A class of grade school children learn about the teeth. Written on the board are questions and answers: Why you need teeth--to cut and grind food--a model set of teeth is used to demonstrate chewing; to give form to the face--this is shown on models of heads and teeth of people with malocclusions; to aid personal appearance--shown in footage of a boy before and after repair of his teeth. The causes of caries in teeth are presented using a large model tooth. Immediate repair is advocated. One student goes to visit a dentist, Dr. Early Care, to ask how dental caries affect the rest of the body. The dentist takes him to the visual instruction room and, using slides, X-rays, a book, model teeth, and animated cartoons, explains the process of decay and how mouth infection can become systemic. From Dr. Russell L. Haden's book, Dental infection and systemic disease, case no. 11 is presented. A 27 year-old man, complaining of rheumatism, comes to the doctor on crutches. Cultures from his teeth caused joint and kidney disease when injected into a rabbit. The infection was removed and the patient recovered completely. Other areas of the body to which dental infection can spread and cause disease are illustrated in a drawing. The dentist tells the boy the three essentials to grow and maintain sound, healthy teeth. They are: nutrition (the good foods are listed and shown disappearing into a big tooth); toothbrushing (Dr. W.J. Chapter's Method of brushing from "Dental digest" is presented in still photographs, and proper brushing demonstrated on a set of model teeth); and visiting the dentist. An animated cartoon sequence shows the good foods chasing away the devils of infection. As he says goodbye to the boy, the dentist tells him to remember that dental care is health care.
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Black and white
Received: Aug. 19, 1986 as a donation from the American Dental Association.