World Oral Health Day – why a healthy mouth is important
Every year, the 20th March is World Oral Health Day (WOHD), which aims to celebrate the benefits of a healthy mouth and raise awareness about oral health issues and the importance of oral hygiene for people of all ages. Organised by the FDI World Dental Federation, activities and events around the world on this day aim to highlight the importance of looking after your oral health.
A vast number of people have or will suffer from oral diseases at some point in their lives. Many of these conditions are preventable, hence the need to raise awareness by governments around the globe, education organisations and front line health providers, as well as individuals themselves. 2017’s campaign is encouraging people to ‘Live Mouth Smart’ by making positive choices in relation to their own oral health.
Common oral health problems:
There are a number of oral health problems that people should be aware of, these include:
Gum (periodontal) disease
Mouth and throat cancer
Gum disease is also known to be linked to health problems in other parts of the body, such as stroke, diabetes and heart disease. Gum disease is caused from plaque build-up, your dentist should be able to detect if there are signs of gum disease and provide you with the correct treatment plan.
These are just some of the reasons why raising awareness of oral health is vital, as is promoting the things you can do to help prevent these problems developing in the first place.
Prevention of oral health problems
There are preventative steps that can be taken to help reduce oral health problems, these include:
Brushing your teeth properly with a fluoride toothpaste twice a day, plus cleaning between your teeth by, for example, flossing, is the main way to help maintain good oral health
Regular dentist and dental hygienist visits for check-ups and cleaning
Cut down on sugary food and drinks
Alcohol and smoking can also be big factors in poor oral health
Why is oral health so important?
A recent survey of UK employees found that approximately 415,000 adults miss at least a day of work over oral health issues each year, at a calculated cost to the UK economy of over £36 million.
Oral health also has a big impact on children as well as adults. A report by Public Health England noted that tooth decay and other oral health problems can have a big effect on a child’s day to day life. From eating and speaking through to socialising with other children. Good oral health can also help with a child’s confidence at school.
At the other end of the scale, the oral health of those aged 65+ is also a very important factor in the quality of life, as revealed by a 2016 report, also by Public Health England. The report states that “good oral health is an essential component of active aging. Social participation, communication and dietary diversity are all impacted when oral health is impaired.”
It is important to make sure you attend regular check-ups with your dentist, whether you are young or old. If you notice any changes to your oral health then your dentist should be able to pick up on any issues quickly.
If you believe that you have received poor care from your dentist and have suffered as a result, you may be able to claim compensation. Contact us for free legal advice.