From Our Editors
It's not easy to smile if your oral health is in poor shape. Good oral hygiene is necessary part of overall good health for all Missourians, yet too many people in this state—especially among the poor and elderly—don't have adequate access to dental care. And when oral hygiene deteriorates enough, people can have trouble eating, speaking, or even learning; it also affects their likelihood of employment and their risk of developing conditions like heart disease.
Not content to let the matter go unaddressed, The Greater St. Louis Dental Hygienists' Association decided to raise awareness with the Race for Smiles 5K. Runners, walkers, and their supporters can raise money for the Missouri Coalition for Oral Health and other organizations, which advocates for water fluoridation, the expansion of Medicaid dental benefits, and other policy initiatives. All participants get an Under Armour shirt and dental goodies such as packs of floss, provided they're not used to trip fellow racers.