Association‌ of‌ State‌ &‌ Territorial‌ Dental‌ Directors
3858‌ Cashill Blvd.,‌ Reno,‌ NV‌ ‌89509
Phone‌ 775-626-5008‌‌ Fax‌ 775-626-9268

The Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors (ASTDD) is a national non-profit organization representing the directors and staff of state public health agency programs for oral health. It was organized in 1948 and is one of 17 affiliates of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO). ASTDD formulates and promotes the establishment of national dental public health policy, assists state dental programs in the development and implementation of programs and policies for the prevention of oral diseases; builds awareness and strengthens dental public health professionals' knowledge and skills by developing position papers and policy statements; provides information on oral health to health officials and policy makers, and conducts conferences for the dental public health community.

A strong and effective governmental oral health presence in states and territories to assure optimal oral health.

ASTDD provides leadership to promote a governmental oral health presence in each state and territory, to formulate and promote sound oral health policy, to increase awareness of oral health issues, and to assist in the development of initiatives for prevention and control of oral diseases.

The ASTDD Membership consists of the chief dental public health officer (state dental director) of the state health department or equivalent agency, and the U. S. Territories. ASTDD also offers Individual or Organizational Associate Membership which is open to any public agency, voluntary organization, tribal entity and/or health professionals employed or interested in dental public health. Members and Associate members serve on and chair committee's or work groups, receive the ASTDD newsletter, are enrolled on the ASTDD list serve, and participate in the ASTDD Annual Business Meeting held in conjunction with the annual National Oral Health Conference. Individual Associate member dues are $75.00 per year. Organizational Associate Membership dues are $400 per year.

For more information about ASTDD or to apply for Associate Membership, contact Ms. Christine Wood, ASTDD Executive Director, at

ASTDD Key Messages

State Oral Health Programs make an essential contribution to public health and must be continued and enhanced. Resources to Support ASTDD Key Messages.

  • 1. A successful SOHP must have diversified funding that includes funding for state and local evidence-based programs.
  • 2. A successful SOHP needs a continuous, strong, credible, forward-thinking leader.
  • 3. A successful SOHP needs a complement of staff, consultants and partners with proficiency in the ASTDD Competencies for SOHPs.
  • 4. A successful SOHP needs one or more broad-based coalitions that include partners with fiscal and political clout.
  • 5. A successful SOHP must have valid data (oral health status and other) to use for evaluation, high quality oral health surveillance, a state oral health plan with implementation strategies, and evidence-based programs and policies.

Announcements, Publications & Documents

  • Oral Health Matters - The spring 2015 edition of the ASTDD newsletter; meet members and associate members, check out state shots, and much more. (June 2015)
  • On June 5, 2015, ASTDD hosted a webcast Better Oral Health for Kids with Special Needs. Dr. Jay Balzer presented. Dr. Balzer is a consultant to ASTDD for persons with special needs.  He authored the ASTDD Best Practice Approach Report on Oral Health of Children, Adolescents, and Adults with Special Health Care Needs. He was a career dental officer with USPHS many years ago and served as the federal consultant to state oral health and CSHCN programs in the 8-state Rocky Mountain area. Dr Balzer takes his inspiration from his daughter Allison who was born with severe developmental disabilities and is now 28 and has never had a cavity. Learning objectives for the webcast were that:

    1. Participants will understand the wide variety of special needs that may affect oral health.
    2. Participants will learn about 11 resources that can be used to promote better oral health for kids with special needs
    3. Participants will understand how to identify the "right" dental home for kids with special needs.

    Better Oral Health for Kids with Special Needs PowerPoint slides
  • On May 12, 2015 ASTDD and CDC's Division of Oral Health (DOH) hosted a webcast to launch Oral Health Data, a new open data platform. Oral Health Data brings together data from multiple sources into an integrated platform where people can see oral health indicator data, all in one place. Oral Health Data replaces the existing National Oral Health Surveillance System (NOHSS), Oral Health Maps, and State Synopses websites. The new, integrated data application brings together oral health data in a whole new way. Users can filter up-to-date data by indicator type, topic, geographic location, year, or data source. They can view data in maps, graphs, and tables and use the data portal to pull targeted insights with filtering and visualization tools.

    During the webinar, CDC/DOH also demonstrated the newest version of My Water's Fluoride. The newest version of My Water's Fluoride (MWF) 2.0 offers the site's 700,000+ annual visitors the most current data that each state has provided to WFRS; the water system data they are looking for, in understandable terms; and a streamlined interface through which they can find fluoridation status in just 4 clicks.

    Oral Health Data PowerPoint slides
    My Water's Fluoride PowerPoint slides
  • During the 2015 ASTDD Annual Business meeting, Christine Wood, Executive Director of ASTDD, presented this PowerPoint, in which she highlighted ASTDD activities in 2014 and early 2015, organized under each of the five ASTDD Strategic Plan focus areas:
    • Influence Policy
    • Promote and Use evidence-based practices
    • Provide guidance and resources for SOHP Infrastructure, capacity and workforce
    • Build partnerships
    • Strengthen ASTDD
  • Using Social Media To Promote Oral Health: Twitter Messaging (April 2015)
  • ASTDD 2014 Annual Report
  • ASTDD Awards Brochure
  • Fluoridation Awards Brochure
  • State-Based Oral Health Surveillance Systems - ASTDD supports and strongly recommends that state health jurisdictions develop an oral health surveillance plan, and implement and maintain a robust state-based oral health surveillance system. This new ASTDD policy statement outlines the essential elements needed for a robust state-based oral health surveillance plan and system. (April 2015)
  • Nutrition Education and Healthy Eating in School Settings - In this policy statement, the Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors, explores the relationship between nutrition education and healthy eating in schools and expresses support for the inclusion and expansion of oral health in school nutrition curricula and the promotion of healthy foods served on campus following evidence-based practices to reduce the risk of dental caries and to promote health and well being. (March 2015)
  • Maternal and Child Health National Performance Measure Summary and Detailed Overview - The measures and the process states use for the application, needs assessment, and reporting for the Maternal and Child Health (MCH) block grant has changed. There are numerous opportunities to promote and integrate oral health into a state's MCH needs assessment, Title V application, and Title V reporting. This document includes a one-page summary and then a multi-page detailed overview of the changes along with suggested strategies to promote oral health in states using the new framework. (March 2015)
  • ASTDD Services - ASTDD provides state and territorial oral health programs with technical assistance, support and learning opportunities to help them build effective programs and systems, and implement environmental change strategies.  This brochure describes the various types of technical assistance with associated tools and resources available from ASTDD. (February 2015)

Upcoming Meetings

Save the Date!
2016 National Oral Health Conference
April 18 - 20, 2016; Pre-Conference April 16-17, 2016
Cincinnati, OH

Campaign for Dental Health: Life is Better with Teeth

Advertising on ASTDD's website does not imply an endorsement by ASTDD of a company's products or services.