It’s something that many of us take for granted, but oral health is an important health concern, as a healthy mouth is important for safeguarding other areas of our health and wellbeing. World Oral Health Day returns today (20th March), with the aim of encouraging all of us to take charge of our oral health and raise awareness of just how important it is to maintain it. With oral diseases still having a huge effect across the globe, this awareness day is vital to ensure that work continues to improve the quality of oral health across the world.
About World Oral Health Day
World Oral Health Day, run by the World Dental Federation and as well as providing information about the benefits of good oral health, it is also a day for planning fun activities which help encourage people to take steps to look after their teeth and mouth.
Each World Oral Health Day has its own unique theme. The theme for this year’s is: ‘It all starts here. Healthy mouth. Healthy body’, encouraging people to make an overall change for a healthy body, starting with their mouths.
Why oral health is important
Oral health is important for a number of reasons. Firstly, having good oral hygiene helps prevent issues such as tooth decay, bad breath and gum disease, helping to limit trips to the dentist. Our teeth have to last us the duration of our lives, so it’s really important we learn good habits while we’re young so we can carry them through adulthood and into later life. This is why demonstrating good oral health to your children is so important. With more than 90% of the world’s population suffering from oral diseases at some point in their lives, starting good oral hygiene habits suggests this is a priority health area.
Some studies have also revealed that poor oral hygiene can lead to well-known oral health concerns such as gum disease, but did you know that links have also been made with diabetes and cardiovascular disease too?
How you can get involved
It’s easy to get involved in World Oral Health Day, and it starts by looking after your teeth. To ensure good oral health you should:
- Brush your teeth twice-daily – ideally in the morning and before bed
- Floss every day to make sure that you get rid of any food or plaque which may have been missed/hard to reach by brushing
- Limit you sugar intake
- Stop smoking
- Cut down on alcohol
- Get regular dental check-ups – there’s help available from the NHS if you qualify for free dentistry.
Those wishing to get involved in the campaign can do so using many of the ideas on the FDI website whilst using Twitter and Facebook to spread awareness of the campaign using #WOHD16.
Further information about oral health
If you’re looking for more information about oral health, the NHS website has some great articles covering a range of topics from child dental care to dental services. Meanwhile, our out of hours dental health services are available to you in the East Berkshire area should you need emergency treatment.