National Toothache Day puts oral health in focus
One of Europe’s largest dental treatment providers, Mydentist, is encouraging people across the UK to prioritise their oral health, as the nation gets set to mark National Toothache Day on 9 February.
Barry Cockcroft, non-executive director at Mydentist and former chief dental officer for England, believes that the dental profession continues to have a hugely positive impact on the oral health of the population. With more than 670 practices across the UK, Mydentist has made a valuable contribution to this improvement by making dental services more accessible to the public.
He said: ‘There are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to our oral health; it’s not as good as it could be, but overall oral hygiene standards have improved significantly.’
Despite this, he suggested there’s still more to do, pointing out that people need to be more proactive in looking after their own teeth, rather than waiting for problems to develop before seeking treatment.
‘Toothache is a much less common occurrence than it used to be. Much of this improvement is down to the continued efforts of the dental profession, but the public must play their part by preventing disease themselves through maintaining a good oral hygiene routine, maintaining a healthy diet and attending regular check-ups before trouble develops,’ he commented.
Recent studies have dispelled one or two myths surrounding the nation’s dental practices. A long-held stereotype suggests that Americans have better teeth than Britons, but research conducted by University College London, using data from the English Adult Dental Health Survey and the US National Health and Nutrition Survey, has concluded that this isn’t actually the case.
Amongst other findings, the studies showed that the average number of missing teeth was higher in the US (7.31) than it was in England (6.97), and that socioeconomic factors in the US meant people were more likely to have poor dental health.
Dental health begins at home
To mark National Toothache Day on 9 February, Mydentist is encouraging people across the UK to learn more about their oral health, and take steps towards improving the condition of their teeth. You don’t need to be suffering from toothache to take part; the day is all about raising awareness of oral health.
‘While serious dental issues must be handled by a professional before the damage is irreparable, there is much that people can do at home to take care of their teeth and prevent any serious problems,’ Barry continued.
‘We would like to use this year’s National Toothache Day to encourage others to take matters into their own hands at first in order to improve their own oral health and to prevent issues, and seeking expert help when they need it.’
Some ways to mark the day include:
- Stock up on everything needed to keep your teeth clean and healthy, including a good quality toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash and dental floss
- Examine your diet and look for ways in which you can reduce the amount and frequency of sugar consumption
- Try out a new and more effective brushing technique
- Call your dentist to schedule your next appointment
- Teach your children how to brush their teeth properly.