Parents must drill home oral health message to kids
 

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Parents must drill home oral health message to kids

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Parents must drill home oral health message to kids

 

Parents must drill home oral health message to kids

Parents are facing the brush off from their children when it comes to them cleaning their teeth, a new dental survey reveals.

The National Dental Survey found that well over half of the parents asked found it challenging and generally difficult to get their children to brush their teeth both in the morning and again at night.

More worryingly, the research, conducted by the British Dental Health Foundation, found that almost one in three parents do not trust their children to clean their teeth properly.

Chief executive of the Foundation, Dr Nigel Carter, showed concern over the results and believes more needs to be done to encourage children to keep their mouths healthy.

Dr Carter said: 'With all the issues and difficulties new parents have to face, keeping a good oral health routine for your child may not be at the top of your list – but it should.

'Getting them into good habits early on is the only way to teach them the value of looking after their teeth for life. If children learn how to manage their teeth at an early age, the sooner they will be able, and want to do it by themselves.

'A lot of people still do not release the links between a healthy mouth and a healthy overall body. Having a clean set of teeth and gums can help to prevent the likelihood of developing heart disease, diabetes and strokes in the future, so getting children to understand the importance of oral hygiene goes much deeper than stained teeth and the odd filling.'

The National Dental Survey, released in conjuncture with National Smile Month and commissioned by its campaign sponsors Oral-B, Listerine and Orbit Complete, surveyed more than 1,000 members of the public.

The annual survey aims to investigate the dental habits and practices of those living in the UK, in order to address the levels of awareness and misconceptions there are about oral health.

Further findings from the study will be released throughout National Smile Month on the Foundation's website at www.dentalhealth.org.

Dr Carter adds: 'The annual surveys are always fascinating and throw up some startling results. We often struggle to believe the habits of some of those asked and it really does flag up how little people know about their oral health.

'By looking through the results so far it is clear that we as a Foundation, as well as dental practices up and down the country, need to get children more motivated when it comes to brushing their teeth. Parents can consistently drill home the messages but at the end of the day it is ultimately down to the child themselves.'

The Foundation's online shop currently has hundreds of motivators for children of all ages, from novelty toothbrushes, to CDs and DVDs, to colouring books and boomerangs.

Dr Carter adda: 'We need to make fighting cavities fun. Providing more educational resources to younger levels will help children realise the importance of keeping a health mouth. We continue to supply fun and enjoyable educational tools for them to use and go side-by-side with the good healthy messages from their parents.

'If parents do struggle to get their child to brush their teeth then contact the National Dental Helpline (0845 063 1188) for free advice on dental health and tips to get your child involved in a positive routine.'

The Foundation's three key messages throughout National Smile Month are to brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes using fluoride toothpaste, cut down on how often you have sugary foods and drinks and visit your dentist regularly as often as they recommend provide a firm base for a lifetime of good oral health.

 Posted on : Wed 19th - May - 2010

 

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