Warrington and Halton Hospitals

National Smile Month

The Trust’s Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and Orthodontics department are supporting National Smile Month by encouraging staff and the public to look after their oral hygiene.

The Trust's Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and Orthodontics department are supporting National Smile Month and are encouraging the public to learn a little more about why a healthy smile is so important and share tipes on how to improve and maintain it.

Organised by oral health charity, The Oral Health Foundation, National Smile Month this year runs from May 15 to June 15 - the UK’s largest and longest running campaign to promote good oral health. It is simple and effective with three key messages:

  • Brush your teeth twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste.

  • Cut down on how often you have sugary foods and drinks.

  • Visit the dentist regularly, as often as they recommend

A healthy smile can be a great asset. It can benefit us socially and help us in our careers and relationships but it also has many more practical benefits. Our teeth have such an important role to play in our lives. They help us chew and digest food, talk and speak clearly and they also give our face its shape. Because of this, it only makes sense to give our oral health the best possible care.

So how do you keep your mouth healthy? Here are just a few tips that can be included in a daily routine:

  • Brush your teeth just before you go to bed and one other time during the day with a fluoride toothpaste

  • Clean in between your teeth using interdental brushes or floss. This will help to clean a higher portion of the tooth and prevent the build-up of plaque

  • Parents should supervise their children’s tooth brushing until they are about 7 years old and use only a pea-sized smear of fluoride toothpaste

  • Change your toothbrush every two to three months or sooner if it becomes worn as it will not clean the teeth properly

  • A diet that is rich in vitamins, minerals, and fresh fruit and vegetables can help to prevent gum disease

  • A glass of water is the best drink to give your child after eating sugary foods

  • Visit your dentist or hygienist for regular advice and cleaning tips – if you are nervous about visiting the dentist, make sure they are aware of why so they can improve your treatment

  • Introduce your child to the sights and sounds of the dental practice at an early age to allay any dental phobia that might develop. Take them with you when you go for a check-up

  • Wean your baby off the bottle early to avoid them developing dental problems

  • Quitting smoking will help you reduce the chances of developing a whole host of oral health problems, including gum disease, tooth decay, yellow teeth and mouth cancer

Need to register with a dentist? - Unlike registering with a GP, Dentists are not bound to a catchment area so you can find a dental practice that’s convenient for you. Simply telephone the dental practice to see if there are any appointments available. At your first visit you may need to fill in a registration form, this is so you can be added to their patient database.

If you do not have a regular dental practice or are new to the area you can search for a dentist in your local area on the NHS Choices website.

Stephen Porter Hospital Practitioner at Warrington Hospital said: “People underestimate how much effort is required to maintain a healthy mouth. A meticulous cleaning regime carried out every single day is the most important thing you can do to ensure you keep your mouth happy and healthy”.

Find out more at www.nationalsmile.org or search for a dentist in your local area at www.nhs.uk

Published: 15/05/2017

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