A charity Campaign aiming to improve the oral health of residents in the United Arab Emirates is set to return in 2015, following a successful pilot of the event in June.
UAE Smile Month, organised by the International Dental Health Foundation, focused on the importance of brushing, good nutrition, and regular visits to the dentist in a bid to demonstrate the significance of a healthy smile, not only for our oral health, but our overall health too.
The pilot campaign, which had funding from Listerine, Colgate and INDEX, and which had backing from the Dubai Health Authority, saw more than 2,000 UAE Smile Month packs promoting oral health education sent to dental offices and hospitals throughout the region.
Chief Executive of the International Dental Health Foundation, Dr Nigel Carter OBE, says the month-long spotlight on oral health has made great strides in asking everybody to think more about the health of their mouths and is looking ahead to build on the campaign’s success in future years.
Dr Carter, said, “We launched UAE Smile Month as an oral health campaign to really get everybody thinking more about how we care for our teeth and what we can do to achieve a healthy smile. A good brushing routine, healthy diet and regular visits to dentist may seem like simple things to do, but they can make such a big difference to the state of our mouths. Everybody involved in UAE Smile Month, our team at the International Dental Health Foundation, our campaign sponsors, along with the dental teams on the ground, have not only seen the benefits of improving oral health education first hand during the month, but we have also had tremendous fun while doing it.”
“We have distributed around 10,000 UAE Smile Month ‘Smileys’ throughout the region. In addition to them having our three key messages to great oral health on them, they have been a wonderful way for us to engage people to learn more about the value of their smiles. Now we must look forward to delivering UAE Smile Month again in 2015 with the aim of reaching even more people in a bid to improve their oral health,”
Shiamaa Shihab, Specialist Registrar at the Dubai Health Authority, said, “UAE Smile Month 2014 was a great opportunity for dental hygienists to interact more with their community outside of the clinic environment. The reaction we have had from our clients has been truly fantastic.”
Latest figures show around four in five (80 per cent) of adults in the UAE currently suffer from preventable tooth decay while more than two and a half million admit to only brushing their teeth once-a-day.
The UAE Smile Month three key messages for great oral health urges everybody to brush their teeth for two minutes twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste; cut down on how often they have sugary foods and drinks; and to visit their dentist regularly, as often as they recommend.