4 Key Oral Health Messages
To promote good Oral Health there are four key messages:
reduce the consumption and especially the
frequency of intake of drinks, confectionery and foods
- The consumption of sugars both the frequency and the amount is important in determining the rate of tooth decay.
- When sugars are consumed they should be part of a meal rather than between meals.
- Snacks and drinks should be free of added sugars whenever possible.
- The frequent consumption of acidic drinks (such as fruit juice, squashes or carbonated drinks) should be avoided to help prevent dental erosion.
Clean the teeth thoroughly twice every day with fluoride toothpaste.
- Effective daily toothbrushing with fluoride toothpaste is the best way of preventing both caries and periodontal disease.
- Other oral hygiene aids such as floss and interdental brushes are best used after they have been demonstrated by a dentist, therapist or hygienist.
- Thorough brushing of all tooth surfaces and gum margins twice every day is of more value than more frequent cursory brushing, and a gentle scrub technique should be advised.
- A small soft-to-medium texture toothbrush should be used to allow all tooth surfaces and gum margins to be cleaned easily and comfortably.
- Effective toothbrushing with fluoride toothpaste will help control caries provided that the diet is also favourable.
fluoridation of the water supply is a safe and highly effective public health measure.
- Water fluoridation should be targeted at communities with higher caries levels.
- Where it is not technically feasible other fluoride strategies should be employed, such as programmes to promote the use of fluoride toothpaste.
4. Dental attendance:
have an oral examination every year.
- Everyone, irrespective of age and dental condition, should have an oral examination approximately once a year so that cases of oral cancer or other oral diseases can be detected early and treated.
- This advice also applies to those without any natural teeth.
- Children and those at risk from oral diseases including smokers may need to be seen more frequently, as advised by the dentist.