Insurance Claims: The Spookiest Part of Halloween?

October is a magical time of year. Crisp Autumn mornings, the changing colors of the leaves, and the massive displays in stores are all signs of one thing: Halloween is drawing near. While ghosts, ghouls, and goblins may be frightening enough, what if we told you there are many more things to fear on Halloween? Though the malicious monsters will fade away after midnight, lacking the proper insurances to protect your home and property can give you a scare that lasts for months or even years to come. To enjoy this holiday with peace of mind, follow these tips to protect yourself inside and outside your home. 

At Home – The Risks: 

While you may offer treats to your visitors on Halloween, some people may choose a trick instead. According to Geico’s research from 2019, instances of vandalism increase by 30% on Halloween compared to the average number of daily claims. Additionally, Halloween is the third most common day for auto theft. Beyond these outside risks, homeowners should also be mindful of potential insurance claims due to fires or injuries to trick-or-treaters. 

How to Prepare: 

To minimize risks while still enjoying the holiday, we recommend that homeowners first ensure that their property is sufficiently well-lit. Bright lighting can serve as a deterrent from would-be vandals. It can also illuminate any potential tripping-hazards in your yard. To protect your vehicle from possible vandalism or theft, it is ideal to park it inside a garage. If this is not an option, park in a well-lit area, lock your doors, and remove any tempting valuables that can be seen from outside. Once you have ensured that your home is well-lit and your car is parked securely, begin reviewing that your decorations have been set up safely. Check your yard for potential tripping hazards such as hidden extension cords or divots in the ground. After confirming that there are no tripping hazards outside the home, check your decorations for potential fire hazards. It’s best to avoid open flames in favor of battery-operated candles or LED lighting as a safer alternative. Ensure that you do not drape any fabrics over these lights to avoid a possible fire. Lastly, confirm that you are appropriately insured from all the spooky possibilities below: 

  • Comprehensive Auto Insurance: This will cover your vehicle in the event of vandalism or theft.  
  • Homeowners Insurance/Condo Insurance: For traditional single-family homes, Homeowners Insurance will protect you in the event of vandalism or theft inside the house. If you live in a condo, condo insurance protects you from vandalism or theft inside your home. 


Going Out – The Risks: 

Whether you have children to take trick-or-treating, or you are attending a party, many people choose to spend Halloween away from home. This can make for a fun and memorable night, but celebrators should be careful while on the road. The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Traffic Safety Administration reports that an average of 32 people are killed in automotive accidents every Halloween, with 42% of those incidents involving at least one drunk driver. Additionally, Halloween is the deadliest day of the year for pedestrians, with the second deadliest day being November 1 due to incidents after midnight on Halloween. The National Safety Council reports that children are more than twice as likely to be stricken and killed by a vehicle on Halloween than any other day of the year.  

How to Prepare: 

First, whether you are walking or driving, put any electronic devices away. While distracted driving at any time can be a deadly endeavor, the increased foot traffic due to trick-or-treaters requires that drivers be particularly cautious. Remain vigilant of people walking in the road and watch for children in dark costumes that may be difficult to see. If you are trick-or-treating with your children, try to place yourself between them and the road to prevent them from running out. Additionally, look to incorporate reflective tape or lights into your costumes to increase visibility from the road. To stay safe and protected from these risks, make sure you are adequately insured: 

  • Automotive Liability Insurance: This insurance covers medical costs for others if you injure them in a car accident. Additionally, this form of insurance can help pay for legal expenses in a lawsuit relating to an automotive accident. Check your policy to confirm the coverage limit. 
  • Uninsured Motorist/Personal Injury Protection Insurance: These forms of insurance can cover damages in the event of a hit-and-run or other automotive vs. pedestrian incidents. They could cover the medical bills or lost wages as a result of the accident. Please note that rules regarding these forms of insurance vary from state to state; check with your local insurance agent for state-specific questions. 

For more information on ways to properly cover your home and other property with insurance, talk to your local agent today to build the perfect insurance bundle that is right for you.

Sugar Rush: How Does Too Much Candy Affect Your Body?

We all know that sugar is not good for our bodies, but the scary repercussions do not seem to be fully realized when we look at American culture. Many of our holidays revolve around food, and, particularly and not coincidentally, processed and refined foods such as candy. Americans love candy and purchase around twenty-four pounds of candy per person, per year, ingesting the most around Halloween.

Americans, we have a problem.

Too much sugar is poisonous for our bodies. Sugar overworks the liver and pancreas and causes inflammation. It directly and indirectly leads to a wide array of health problems, from tooth decay and obesity to heart disease and diabetes. Removing sugar from your diet can even lower your chances of suffering from the worst symptoms and conditions from Covid-19.

In a study on the effects of sugar on heart health published in 2014, “people who got 17% to 21% of their calories from added sugar had a 38% higher risk of dying from cardiovascular disease compared with those who consumed 8% of their calories as added sugar.”

So we know it is bad, but there are important questions that remain: How much is too much and how do we change?

How much is too much?

The American Academy of Pediatrics says that “on average, sugar makes up 17% of what children consume each day,” way more than what the Food Pyramid suggests. It isn’t feasible for us to track our sugar using a pyramid graph, but there are more reasonable ways we can monitor and evaluate our sugar consumption.

Nutrition labels have continuously improved over the years in containing a wealth of info that should not be ignored. The American Heart Association recommends you look to this label and keep your daily intake to under twenty-five grams (or six teaspoons) for women and under 36 grams (or nine teaspoons) for men.

What to do about it.

Of course, there’s an app for that, but we can’t expect ourselves to digitally track sugar intake for every member in our home. One of the easiest ways to monitor is to limit and even cut sugary foods in their entirety from the shopping list.

Who is in charge of the shopping and meal preparations? Start here. Limit or remove foods that contain refined sugars, such as high fructose corn syrup, listed on the labels. Replace sugary drinks, which is the main way children consume sugar, with healthier options such as milk and water. Begin this healthy overhaul before the food even enters your home.

Don’t be a total killjoy, especially around the holidays, but do be conscientious of what is going into your and your children’s bodies. Don’t leave candy lying in plain view – out of sight, out of mind, right? Impose limits on daily sugar intake that follow the guidelines for children (25 grams per day for children 2 and older) and for adults, especially if you have dietary restrictions for a health condition.

Other ways are to choose healthier options. Insider ranked almost two dozen fan-favorite candies from worst to best (Smarties are “best”). Whole fruits and low- to no-calorie sweeteners are another, healthier way to satisfy a sweet tooth.

Most importantly, be mindful of what goes into your body, and if you buy the groceries, pay mind to those who look to you for guidance on living a healthy lifestyle. There are many resources around you. Ask your doctor, dentist, and even your insurance agent about these resources to cut costs and improve your dental, health, and life insurance plans. Heeding advice now will have more rewards than a king-size candy bar can offer! Your health is invaluable – treat it that way.

6 Reasons to Insure Your All Terrain Vehicle (ATV)

Blazing trails on your ATV out in the fresh, clean, country air is an indescribable joy that can only be felt. Thinking about insurance against damages and injuries is no joy, but it is a hill that you and your agent need to charge over together so that you can continue doing what you love.

Here are six reasons you should get with your agent and discuss the proper coverage so that you can get back to your ride, worry-free:

1. Legal Compliance

Many states require proof of insurance when using your ATV on public land, and some states require it when in use anywhere not on your own land. You may also not be allowed by law to drive your ATV on paved roads in your state. To avoid a ticket and fines, it’s best to ask your agent about the minimum requirements for insuring your joy-ride in your home state.

2. Travel

Riding dirty may not just be a challenge at home, but could also be an issue when leaving the homestead. A good tip is to check the states where you plan to ride. Many ATV enthusiasts travel to areas such as Moab, Utah, for their thrill-seeking adventures, but there are countless destinations for a fun-filled weekend with your ATV. One thing that could be a real kill-joy on vacation is to find yourself noncompliant with minimum insurance requirements. Keep your travels safe and pleasant by talking to your insurance agent before crossing state lines.

3. Damages

Taking the good with the bad, we know that incurring damages is a sure possibility in the rough and rugged terrain you enjoy. Averaging anywhere from $5,000 to $15,000, this “toy” is no small purchase. Protect yourself like you would with your car or truck with either liability, collision, or comprehensive coverage. Not only should you be worried about your vehicle, but other vehicles and property as well.

4. Injury

There are about 650 deaths and over 100,000 injuries involving ATVs each and every year. Concussion, broken bones, spinal trauma, and cuts & bruises are the four most common ATV injuries. Wearing the proper gear, such as a helmet and padding, prevents many, but not all, injuries. Ask your doctor or agent about more precautions to take to avoid getting hurt, but know that the risk of injury on ATVs is fairly high, especially for children under 16 which account for about 26% of all ATV-related accidents in 2018.

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) says you may want to ask your agent the following questions: Are there age restrictions on who may operate my ATV? Does my policy cover other people who may operate my ATV? These are great springboard questions into protecting more than just your ATV, but your little riders as well.

5. Theft

Due to their high value and ease of loading in a truck bed or a trailer, your ATV is an ideal item for would-be thieves. Protect it from theft as best you can by following tips from your agent, such as removing keys, using the steering lock, and blocking it in with another vehicle if you can’t keep it inside.

6. Low Cost

Consider the insurance part of the sticker price of your ATV, because without it, you’re probably just borrowing time until the inevitable happens. Insurance is there for those instances, the unexpected. The average cost of your monthly premium is only about $100 for a standard policy, but it can vary wildly depending on your age, area, amount of use, and model of ATV. The only way to know for sure is to make an appointment with your agent and get a quote.

Your time on your ATV should be worry-free and fun. Let your agent help with that in the best way they know how to protect you.

The 3 Most Costly and Unimaginable Business Claims

Insurance is all about risk mitigation, not risk elimination. Risk is something that is always there. Without anticipating it, more than 40% of small businesses will see a property or liability loss within the next decade. Knowing this, the responsible question from any business owner is, “do I have sufficient coverage?” The most expensive claims usually happen the least often, catching many business owners by surprise. In fact, the more unimaginable the event commonly means the more severe the claim.

Do you have enough coverage to sustain a costly loss? How can you even be ready for the “unimaginable” happening? The first step is to be aware of these rare yet costly occurrences. Most big disasters are rooted in a failure to imagine, but some people have experienced these disasters before, and you can learn a lot from them. Here are the three largest, and also least frequently occurring, business insurance claims covered, at least in part, under standard business liability and property policies:

#1: Reputational Harm

Copyright, libel, and slander are examples that top the chart in the average claim size of $50,000. Infringing on another entity’s rights can be expensive. A general liability policy provides basic coverage that most businesses need. Consult your business attorney or insurance agent to learn about the common legal pitfalls in this category that catch businesses by surprise, concerning only about 5% of all recent business claims.

#2: Vehicular Accident

The average price tag of $45,000 is associated with still less than 5% of insurance claims. In a post-pandemic world, we will probably see this fall further down the list in frequency with more people working from home. Still, at this size, it is something to consider adding mitigation strategies and sufficient coverage so that you don’t worry about taking such a large hit against your business.

#3: Product Liability and Fire Damage

Nothing to turn your nose at, a $35,000 loss can hurt many small businesses, if not adequately covered. With each happening only less than 10% of the time, don’t get caught back on your heels forking all of this out of pocket. Call your agent to discuss the necessary preventive measures and coverage for each of these unforeseen events.

Business insurance makes it so that you don’t have to imagine the worst; you can just focus on what you do and leave the disasters, the accidents, and the unimaginable to the insurance company. Choose an insurance company with exceptional customer service that can save you time, money, and effort when the unexpected strikes. Call or email your insurance agent to see if you have enough coverage for when one of these most costly and unimaginable business disasters happens.

You can’t fully prepare for whatever the world throws at you and your business, but your agent can mitigate and provide the extraordinary care needed so that you can keep your business on track.

Bundle Up! What It Means to Bundle Your Insurance Policies 

Bundling up isn’t just for winter – it is also a way to save on your insurance premiums. What happens when you have a lot of coverages but don’t bundle them? You end up with many confusing pieces of paperwork, and you could be spending more money than you need. Do you have different policies from different providers? Maybe you weren’t sure you wanted to bundle your policies and just never went back. Today, we will look over the importance of bundling your policies from more than just the money-saving aspect, and we understand how important that is!  

Let’s Save Some Money 

The biggest reason that many people have insurance bundles is the amount of money they can save. When you bundle your policies, you allow one insurance carrier to insure multiple lines under the same policy. The most popular bundle usually consists of home, life, and auto policies. Why do people lean towards bundling their policies? Bundling is typically done due to the agency offering some form of discount. These discounts are generally between 10% and 2% per policy. With this discount, you could be saving quite a bit of money every year. Money-saving isn’t the only perk to bundling your policies. 

Simplify the Confusion of Insurance Policies 

Simplification is the best way to help keep your life organized, and your insurance agency understands that! When you bundle your insurance policies, you can do away with the number of monthly bills you receive due to your coverages being under one entity. In addition to the convenience, if your insurance policies get done this way, it makes filing a claim more manageable if you ever need to. Life is hectic, and we all have so many things we want to do with so little time. Condensing all of your bills into one can help you save time and stress.  

Helps Build a Relationship with Your Agent 

Did you know that bundling your policies together can help you gain or create a better relationship with your insurance agent? When you begin working with a singular agent for all of your insurance needs, they can get to know you better and will be able to suggest insurance policies that you may need more accurately. In addition to their helpful eyes, they can help you find ways to save money on your policies. When you aren’t directly interacting with your agent, they will be on the lookout for potential risks that you need to know about. This type of personalization is hard to find when your policies get split throughout multiple agencies. Bundle up those policies to protect yourself and prepare for the unexpected with your insurance agent by your side.  

Are you ready to bundle up your policies? Then, contact your local insurance agency to meet with your agent today.   

Important Tips for Your Roof Inspection

Your roof is your home’s first line of defense from the natural elements such as rain, hail, snow, and debris. Even a small crack can cause extensive damage, so it is a good idea to conduct routine roof checks. This helps keep your home and family safe, while also ensuring you have documentation of professional maintenance to provide your insurance policy. Here are tips to keep in mind when it comes time for your roof check. 

Inspect Regularly 

Plan to inspect your roof at least once a year. This allows you to stay ahead of repairs as you note possible damage. Conduct additional checks after extreme weather such as hail, snow, or thunderstorms. Depending on the weather in your climate, your roof may be subject to more possible damage from natural elements. Your home insurance policy does not cover “wear and tear” repairs or those caused by age, so it is vital to complete this maintenance as part of your homeownership. 

Do a Visual Check First 

The first step in your inspection is to do a visual check from the ground. Walk around your home to check for any signs of possible damage. Here are a few things to look for: 

  • Missing or broken shingles 
  • Warped, blistered, or curled shingles 
  • Asphalt shingle grit in gutters 
  • Cracked caulk 
  • Rust spots 
  • Moss or lichen on rooftop 
  • Sagging spots 
  • Darkened ceilings or interior water damage 

If you spot these signs, it is time to get the problem addressed immediately. If left unrepaired, these concerns can cause major structural damage to your home. Because they were part of the wear and tear that homeowners are expected to maintain, the cost will come out of your pocket and not your insurance policy.

Hire a Professional 

It can be tempting to perform a “DIY” home repair and save a few dollars, but this is not worth the risk. Hire a roofing professional who has experience fixing roofs and working on a ladder. They can address the concerns you identified, along with inspecting the full roof to determine if more work is needed. Confirm that the roofing repair company also has their own insurance updated, and ask what warranty they offer on their work.  

Understand Your Homeowner’s Insurance Policy 

If your roofing professional determines that your roof is in need of a total replacement, you may be facing an extremely high cost. In the case of damage due to age or normal wear and tear, the repairs will most likely not be covered under your homeowner’s insurance policy. However, if a tree branch has fallen onto your roof and caused a leak, this may be covered. 

Conducting annual roof inspections is a vital way to keep your home and family safe. Keep all your records of any updates and maintenance completed by licensed and insured professionals. For questions about your homeowner’s policy or additional roof insurance coverage, speak with your local agent today. 

What Kind of Insurance Do Web-Based Businesses Need?

With an increasing number of consumers shopping for goods and services online, digital businesses have been able to experience tremendous growth. But as a company takes on more orders, clients, and staff, the owner’s liability also increases. 

You can protect yourself and your investment in your business through certain types of insurance. Even though your company may not have a brick-and-mortar presence to protect, you must still take precautions to protect yourself from digital security threats. 

Here are a few types of insurance web-based businesses should consider for adequate protection. 

Business Owner’s Policy

This insurance bundle is a good place to start when securing your digital or e-commerce business. It includes general liability insurance, commercial property insurance, and business income insurance. 

  • General liability insurance protects you against claims of property damage or personal injuries, such as a package courier injuring themselves while picking up goods or inventory stored within your home. 
  • Commercial property insurance protects the location, supplies, equipment, inventory, and more that is used to conduct your business. Keep in mind that if you operate out of your home, your standard homeowner’s insurance does not cover damage to these business-related items, even though you own the residence.
  • Business income insurance provides coverage for any potential income you may lose as a result of a covered loss, such as property damage. 

Professional Liability Insurance 

If your customers believe you made a mistake or poor choice when providing them with your services, they could sue you for certain losses or damages. This type of insurance policy helps cover your own legal fees that may be associated with a court case or settlement mediation. Even though you do your best to eliminate mistakes, your clients may still feel as though your services harmed the success of their own operations. Therefore, it is a vital policy to have for any business offering online services ranging from marketing, graphic design, telehealth, and more. 

Cyber Liability Insurance 

Online businesses are more vulnerable to cyber-attacks. E-commerce companies may be hacked in order to obtain and sell your customers’ credit card information. Should this occur, your cyber liability policy would cover the cost of notifying customers about the breach, hiring an investigation team to find the attacker, and risk assessment to prevent future security compromises. Additionally, your customers may decide to sue you if they experience identity theft or financial hardship as a result of the cyber-attack on your company. Cyber liability insurance can also cover your legal fees during this process.

Business Interruption Insurance 

By operating your business online, you most likely have a smaller overhead than a traditional brick-and-mortar company or store. However, this also means that your business relies on a strong internet connection, server stability, and possibly even access to a warehouse or inventory storage. If any of these are compromised or damaged, you may lose revenue and be unable to complete your payroll, rent, and other business expenses. This is especially common after major natural disasters that destroy internet service and buildings. Business interruption insurance provides coverage for the income you have lost during the interruption, as well as during the time it takes to rebuild your business.

Owning your own online business is exciting and enriching, but it can be difficult to navigate this digital space while protecting yourself and your customers. These policies are a great place to start – speak with your local insurance agent today to learn more about which options will keep your business secure. 

Five Ways Walking Daily Can Change Your Life

The Center for Disease Control recommends taking 10,000 steps per day to maintain good health. This is the equivalent of about five miles, but the average American only takes about 3,000 to 4,000 steps or 1.5 to 2 miles per day with a moderately active lifestyle. The best and simplest way to increase your daily steps is by taking a dedicated walk each day. Here, we break down five reasons why taking a daily walk can improve your health and positively impact your life.  


It Improves Muscle Strength 

Because walking activates nearly your entire muscular system, it is a great way to increase your muscle tone and overall strength. Your legs engage as you balance and walk up or down an incline. Your core, which includes your abdomen, side body, and lower back, works to stabilize you with each step. If you pump your arms while walking, your biceps and triceps can even strengthen through this small isometric movement. Overall, this strength helps increase your range of motion and takes the pressure off your joints.  


It Will Help You Sleep Better at Night 

Moderate aerobic exercise such as walking increases your body’s ability to produce slow-wave sleep. This is the deep stage of sleep that allows the body and mind to recover and reduce stress. The time of day that you exercise may have a small effect on your body’s ability to transition to sleep. Be mindful of this and avoid workouts before bedtime if your body is sensitive to this. Because exercise releases endorphins and raises your core body temperature, it cues a more wakeful state for 30 to 90 minutes. 


It Improves Your Mood 

Have you ever had a bad day and decided to take a walk to clear your head? While the change of scenery probably helped, taking a walk to improve your mood has scientific backing as well. Walking releases endorphins, which are the body’s natural pain killers and mood enhancers. It can also boost energy levels, which may be low if you are in a bad mood. Your body circulates oxygen faster, along with releasing cortisol, epinephrine, and norepinephrine, which are hormones that regulate energy levels. This combination of energy and endorphins leaves you feeling more positive after your walk.  


It Is a Low-Impact Way to Trim Your Waistline 

Walking burns calories without placing a major strain on your joints through high-impact or high-intensity workouts. A 155-pound person will burn about 150 calories during a 30-minute walk, and this can increase with time or a quicker pace. Combining a daily walk with a healthy diet will create a calorie deficit, meaning your body will naturally burn slightly more calories than it consumes. Because walking does not place as much stress on joints as running, this is a great low-impact option for all ages and fitness levels.  


It May Even Help You Live Longer 

In a recent study, scientists found that adults who took 8,000 steps per day had a 51% lower risk of dying from any cause compared to those who took half that. Walking improves your overall physical and mental health, putting you in a better place to live a long and happy life. It is also important to note that even a small change can make a major impact. Just a 30-minute walk five times a week can lower your risk of heart disease, the top disease killer in the U.S., by 19%.  


If daily exercise is not already part of your routine, consult with your doctor and start small. Even a brisk 30-minute walk is better than not taking one at all. From there, begin to add time and increase your speed as you become more comfortable with the exercise. Walking has multiple health benefits that can lower your risk of diabetes, hypertension, arthritis, obesity, and Alzheimer’s. Staying healthy even as you age can also lower your insurance premium as well.  


To learn more about lowering your premium by maintaining good health, speak with your insurance agent today. 

Small Business Owners: What Kind of Insurance Should You Offer to Employees? 

Understanding what types of insurance to offer your small business’s employees can feel like a challenge. However, this is a great problem to have! It means you as the owner has done a wonderful job growing the company and adding new staff members to your dedicated team. Health insurance benefits are a major way to attract top talent to your company.  

The Affordable Care Act changed the landscape for small businesses and now requires companies with 50 or more employees to offer an “affordable” health plan. For an employee-only policy, they cannot spend more than 9.5% of their household income for coverage. Even if your business has fewer than 50 employees, there are still major incentives such as tax credits, employee satisfaction and retention, recruiting talent, and reduced sick time. Here, we are breaking down the basics of the types of insurance coverage to keep your small business’s employees happy and healthy. 

Medical Insurance 

The first step in providing insurance benefits is to offer medical coverage. This includes preventative care like annual checkups, along with emergency support. You as the business owner have options for the types of plans and the amount of subsidizing you want to offer. A Preferred Provider Organization plan is the most common and allows employees to go to a doctor or hospital that is within a “preferred” group. This includes preventative and emergency care. Employees will pay for their monthly premium and any costs up to their deductible. To determine what amount you would like for employees to pay and what you as the business can afford to cover, speak with your local insurance agent who can help you find the best plan and pricing. 

Dental Insurance 

Unlike medical insurance, dental insurance is not required under the Affordable Care Act. However, offering this vital preventative service is typically a low-cost commitment for you as the business owner and a valuable form of care for your employees. Individual employee-sponsored dental plans can cost your small business about $14 to $30 per month per person, with family coverage being higher. Most dental issues are preventative, but they can lead to many more serious health concerns if they are left untreated. Therefore, it is important to offer your small business’s employees the opportunity to enroll in a group plan, even if you cannot subsidize a portion of the cost. A group plan that is negotiated by your insurance agent will be more cost-effective for your employees than a private plan. 

Vision Insurance 

Similar to dental insurance, you are not required to provide your small business employees with vision insurance. However, with three out of four Americans wearing corrective lenses, the cost of eye exams, glasses, and contacts are important to a majority of your employees. If you plan to cover some of the cost for your employees, this is often one of the most inexpensive types of insurance to budget for. Your expense may range from $5 to $10 per month for basic preventative care and corrective lenses. More comprehensive plans, such as those that offer a discount on LASIK surgery or other more intensive procedures, could cost you $15 to $20 per month per employee. Showing your staff that you value all aspects of their health and wellness, especially something that is often out of their control, will go a long way in creating a positive environment for your team. 

Short-Term Disability Insurance 

One final type of insurance that you may want to make available to your employees is short-term disability. While policies can range from three months to a year, each one serves to provide your employee with a portion of their income or salary if they are out of work for a short time. Reasons can include a medical illness or surgery recovery, pregnancy, or injury, but the specific list of covered disabilities will depend on the policy you select. The primary benefit is to your employee, who can hopefully avoid financial hardship while they are unable to work. However, offering this also benefits you as a small business owner. You most likely spend a lot of time and resources selecting and training your staff. By offering this benefit, you can help them maintain their lifestyle, recover safely, and return back to work at the appropriate time.  

Regardless of the size of your small business, offering a variety of insurance plans is becoming more and more important. Jobs and salaries are more competitive than ever, and employees are looking for a company that values both the work they contribute and their personal wellness. Speak with your insurance agent today to determine which group insurance plans are right for your organization. 

Seven Ways to Make Dental Health Fun for Kids 

Cavities are one of the most common chronic diseases affecting children today, but the good news is they are almost completely preventable. According to the Center for Disease Control, about one-third of all cavities can be prevented by fluoride varnish, which children can obtain from dental applications, fluoride-treated water, and toothpaste containing fluoride. Below, we outline seven healthy habits that will make dental health more fun for your children.

Brush Together 

Making this activity part of what you do as a family helps children establish a healthy routine. When your child sees you taking care of your own teeth, they will feel encouraged to do the same and look forward to that time together. Be sure to brush thoroughly and floss, along with completing any other routines recommended by your dentist. 

Time It Out 

Teeth should be brushed for at least two minutes, but this can be hard for children to count out in their heads. Use an hourglass or digital timer to mark exactly two minutes. Allow your child to flip the hourglass or program the timer to foster their own independence and make the activity more engaging and memorable. 

Use a Special Toothbrush 

Children enjoy having objects that they helped select. Allow them to select their own toothbrush at the store. Make sure it has soft bristles that are appropriate for young children. Many stores offer kid-friendly toothbrushes with cartoons or superheroes on the handle, which can also make brushing more exciting and personalized.

Toothpaste Flavors 

You can make brushing fun by using a special toothbrush, but don’t forget to have your child select their favorite flavor of toothpaste, too. Traditional peppermint may not be as exciting for young children, so look for whimsical flavors like bubblegum, strawberry shortcake, or wild cherry. Most manufacturers offer colorful and flavorful toothpaste for children while still including the proper fluoride and cleansing needed for cavity prevention. 

Get Competitive 

For young children who are reluctant to establish an oral hygiene routine, a friendly competition can nudge them in the proper direction. Encourage parents, older siblings, and anyone in your household to enter the competition. See who can brush his or her teeth for a full two minutes without getting tired or distracted. 

Gold Stars 

If your child enjoys competing against family members, take it one step further with a chart that allows children to earn gold stars for each night they complete their oral hygiene routine. This serves as a visual reminder of all the required steps (brushing for two minutes, flossing, etc.) and provides a tactile reward when applying the gold star. This is another activity the whole family can participate in! 

Post-Dentist Surprise 

A great way to ensure every dentist visit is a positive experience is by combining it with another activity your child loves. This reduces anxiety when they know an appointment is coming soon and allows them to remember the event fondly. Some children may enjoy taking a special picnic with snacks that promote healthy teeth, or visiting a park or museum indoors.  

By taking actions that make dental care fun, you are protecting your child’s oral health while also establishing good habits for the future. Most dental insurance providers cover preventative costs such as checkups, so be sure to visit your child’s dentist every six months. Regular visits combined with proper brushing and flossing are the best way to prevent unwanted cavities for years to come.