Oral Health and Nutrition in Children of Haiti
Keywords:Nutrition, Flouride, Dental sealant, Caries prevention
One’s well-being cannot exclude physical health, particularly oral health. Good oral health in adulthood typically stems from childhood, hence the importance of children’s oral health in any country. However, in developing countries, with many burdens of development, oral health for children is often overlooked. Haiti, for example, is one such country where the number of orphans is overwhelmingly large, and what is available for their oral health care is haphazard at best. Haitian children, especially in orphanages, lack proper nutrition and readily available dental care. Diets high in refined carbohydrates, low in protein, little to no vitamins, minerals, fluoridated potable water, and limited access to quality dental care all contribute to the problem at hand, as well as the difficulty in distributing any foreign aid properly and prudently. This paper will review and discuss current data, including the population of orphans in Cite Soleil, the local availability of resources and personnel for delivery of proper dental care to the said population, what foreign aid can be sustainably brought into the locality and distributed properly, to improve the oral health for these children. A well-established local model from Cite Soleil may be used to scale up to the national level and beyond, perhaps to other developing nations.
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