New Survey finds that 3 out of 4 Parents Admit Their Kids Forget to Brush their Teeth
Kids’ Healthy Mouths PSA Campaign Continues to Encourage Parents to Make Sure Their Kids Brush Two Minutes, Twice a Day
It’s estimated that children miss more than 51 million school hours each year due to dental related illness3, yet the survey shows parents perceive their children’s dental health as a low priority compared to other issues such as school safety, nutrition and the upcoming cold and flu season.
In an effort to help parents better understand why ignoring dental health can have serious consequences, and educate families about good dental health habits, the Ad Council and The Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives created new Public Service Ads (PSAs) for the Kids’ Healthy Mouths campaign. The new PSAs are humorous depictions of life lessons which make the point that while parenting can be tricky at times, getting kids to brush for two minutes, twice a day can be easier than most other things parents will try to teach their children. The new PSAs debut today at the American Dental Association (ADA) annual meeting and are now available for nationwide distribution.
Kristina Guerrero, former host of E! News and mother of a one-year old son, Mateo, is a Kids’ Healthy Mouths spokesperson and easily relates to the new PSAs. “Since my son was born last year, I have found that parenting is the most challenging job you could have, but it’s also the most rewarding,” said Guerrero. “I just introduced Mateo to his first toothbrush, and he loves it! In my experience, helping your kids to brush two minutes, twice a day is a lot easier than most other parts of my day as a parent. I’m thrilled to be a part of a campaign that relates to parents and helps them to teach their children the importance of brushing each day.”
The Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives is a coalition of more than 35 leading dental health organizations, who together with the Ad Council, believe every child deserves a healthy smile. The mouth is the gateway to a person's overall health, and an unhealthy mouth can be associated with obesity, diabetes and even heart disease.4 Additionally, while dental disease impacts all children, it disproportionately affects children from low-income families and minorities.5
“The initial success of Kids’ Healthy Mouths shows that we can positively impact the future health of children, but we have so much more work to do, “ said Gary Price, Secretary and CEO of the Dental Trade Alliance Foundation. “Most mouth disease is preventable using steps that can easily become a part of every child’s life routine. The Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives is proud to work with the Ad Council to share the message that a healthy mouth can contribute to a healthy life.”
Created pro bono by ad agency Grey New York, the new PSAs encourage parents and caregivers to make sure their children brush their teeth for two minutes, twice a day. The ads stress that while most parenting is difficult to do in two minutes, such as learning how to cook or ride a bike, making sure kids brush for two minutes, twice a day is something a little simpler. According to the Ad Council study released today, 61 percent of parents think that getting their kids to brush is easier in comparison to other daily tasks such as completing homework and making the bed.1
The new English and Spanish-language PSAs direct parents and caregivers to the campaign website, 2min2x.org (which is available in English and Spanish, and includes a mobile version), where parents and children can watch entertaining videos–all 2 minutes in length–while brushing their teeth. Campaign media partners, including Cartoon Network and myKaZootv donated snippets of videos for the site.
“This campaign has made extraordinary strides in two years in encouraging parents to get their children to brush their teeth for two minutes, twice a day,” said Peggy Conlon, President and CEO of the Ad Council, “This year’s integrated and holistic program will continue to have a significant impact by entertaining, engaging and educating both parents and children about the impact of oral health. The lighthearted nature of the creative makes brushing seem like an accomplishable goal and I believe parents will heed our message.”
Since its launch in 2012, more than 1.7 million people have visited 2min2x.org and the English and Spanish-language PSAs have received more than $64 million in donated media across TV, radio, print, web and outdoor outlets. Additionally, a 2013 Ad Council survey showed that in one year, English-speaking parents reported that their children were significantly more likely to brush twice a day (55 percent in 2013, up from 48 percent in 2012) and significantly more likely to brush for two minutes each time (64 percent in 2013, up from 60 percent in 2012). Spanish-speaking parents report improvement as well, with an increase in those saying that their child brushes at least twice a day (66 percent in 2013, up from 63 percent in 2012) and significantly more reporting their kids are brushing for two minutes (77 percent in 2013, up from 69 percent in 2012).
“At Grey, we believe creativity can solve important problems in the world,” Tor Myhren, Worldwide Chief Creative Officer of Grey, said. “That’s why we’re excited to partner with the Ad Council and The Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives to remind parents and give them the tools they need to help their kids brush more often. The Kid’s Healthy Mouths PSA campaign acknowledges that most parenting is hard, but helping kids brush for two minutes, twice a day is easy. We’re proud this campaign continues to make an impact.”
In addition to the new PSAs, the campaign is kicking off its first video contest leveraging Zooppa.com, the world’s leading crowd sourced marketing platform for producing creative content. The contest will allow amateur and professional video makers to create their own videos showing parents trying to give important advice in just two minutes, leveraging the campaign strategy and using the hashtag #BrushRules. Zooppa has a creative community of 270,000 talented filmmakers and designers. The winner of the contest will be announced in early January 2015. A $20,000 cash prize will be awarded to the contest winners and early submitters can enter the contest in four weeks to receive up to $5,000. The final videos will be reviewed by creative directors at ad agency Grey New York.
The Ad Council is also launching a mobile program in-house on behalf of Kids’ Healthy Mouths that will engage parents and their kids in a fun and creative brushing challenge that supports the campaign’s main goal of encouraging parents to make sure their children brush their teeth for two minutes, twice a day. Users will meet the voice of the program, “Joy,” who will help brand and personalize the texter’s experience. The campaign also includes a mobile gaming app called “Toothsavers” which has received over 120,000 downloads since January of 2014.
Campaign partners will continue to promote Kids’ Health Mouths in the weeks leading up to National Brush Day (November 1), which coincides with Halloween, and throughout the year.
The Ad Council
The Ad Council is a private, non-profit organization with a rich history of marshalling volunteer talent from the advertising and media industries to deliver critical messages to the American public. Having produced literally thousands of PSA campaigns addressing the most pressing social issues of the day, the Ad Council has affected, and continues to affect, tremendous positive change by raising awareness, inspiring action and saving lives. To learn more about the Ad Council and its campaigns, visit https://www.adcouncil.org/, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or view our PSAs on YouTube.
Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives
The Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives is a coalition of the leading organizations in the field of oral health. The Partnership is committed to improve children’s oral health so that they can develop into healthy, productive adults. The coalition shares the view that no child should be in pain and suffer broader health issues or endure the social stigma and lack of opportunity resulting from untreated dental diseases and conditions. The coalition’s primary mission is to teach parents and caregivers, as well as the children themselves, to take control of their own health through oral disease prevention. A complete list of members of the Partnership can be found here.
Grey New York is the flagship headquarters of Grey, the advertising network of Grey Group. Grey Group ranks among the largest global communications companies. Its parent company is WPP (NASDAQ : WPPGY). Under the banner of “Grey Famously Effective Since 1917,” the agency serves a blue-chip roster of many of the world’s best known companies : Procter & Gamble, GlaxoSmithKline, Diageo, Kellogg's, Pfizer, Canon, 3M, NFL, Boehringer Ingelheim, Marriott Hotels & Resorts and T.J. Maxx. Grey was named ADWEEK’s “Global Agency of the Year” and AD AGE’s “Agency of the Year” in 2014. (www.grey.com)
2 The Ad Council’s survey was conducted by LightSpeed Research in September 2014. The nationally representative online survey included 600 parents with children 0-12.
Ellyn Fisher, VP of Public Relations
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