17 Oct Engaging Dental Professionals in Ending Child Abuse
Originally posted by the Kentucky Oral Health Coalition
Delta Dental of Kentucky is partnering with the Kosair Charities’ Face It Movement to equip dental professionals with the information they need to recognize and report child abuse and neglect.
It is estimated that more than 50% of injuries due to child abuse are on the head and neck – meaning the warning signs of abuse are front and center for dental professionals. This group of health professionals have unique opportunities to ask important questions, provide key information, and observe both parents/caregivers and children for the warning signs of child abuse and neglect.
Kentucky Youth Advocates collected responses to a short survey during Summer 2019 to determine dental professionals’ knowledge around child abuse and neglect. View survey findings below.
Face It recently released a new resource on the TEN-4 Bruising Rule, which says that bruising on the torso, ears, and neck should be red flags for possible abuse, especially for children 4 years and younger, as well as any bruising anywhere on babies not yet pulling up or taking steps. On October 4th, Kentucky’s child abuse pediatricians hosted trainings for professionals, including dentists and hygienists, on recognizing and preventing child abuse by utilizing tools like the TEN-4 Bruising Rule.
With support from Delta Dental of Kentucky, the Face It Movement will be providing more targeted resources to dental professionals to supply them with the tools necessary to fulfill their role as a mandated reporter of child abuse and neglect.
Keeping kids safe is an adult responsibility. If you notice abnormal, unexplainable bruising on a young child, make a report to Child Protective Services at 1-877-KYSAFE1.