Leading health charity, the Oral Health Foundation, is delighted to announce the return of National Smile Month for 2017, with the campaign promising to bring with it a summer time of smiles right across the country.
This year the UK’s largest and longest running oral health campaign takes place between 15 May and 15 June and aims to increase awareness of important oral health issues and make a significant difference to the well-being of millions of people.
Supported by thousands of individuals and organisations, National Smile Month promotes three key messages at the heart of good oral health; brush your teeth last thing at night and at least one other time during the day with a fluoride toothpaste, cut down on how often you eat sugary foods and drinks, and visit the dentist regularly, as often as they recommend.
With the days starting to get longer and the sun finally warming up as we count down the days to National Smile Month the charity is calling on dental and healthcare professionals to help spread smiles and key oral health messages even further than ever before.
CEO of the Oral Health Foundation, Dr Nigel Carter OBE, spoke about why professionals should get involved in 2017.
Dr Carter said: “This is your opportunity to help spread some smiles and improve oral health in the UK. As we enter what is amazingly the fifth decade of National Smile Month we can proudly look back and see what we have achieved together, but it is also an opportunity to look forward and see what we can still achieve.
“Our ultimate goal is to improve the oral health of every person in the UK and enable them to smile with confidence. This is, a huge task that we need your help to achieve.
“In 2016, the campaign reached unprecedented levels as we celebrated our 40th birthday, with in excess of 4,000 organisations registering their interest to take part and promote better oral health, but this year we want to go even further.
“We want to reach as many schools, community groups, local workplaces and individuals as possible and with your help we can have a real impact on the nation’s oral health.
“Much of the credit for the huge improvement we have seen in oral health in the UK over the last 40 years, is down to hard working dental and health professionals who go out into their local communities to spread the word about the importance of good oral health and a good oral hygiene routine, with your help, we can herald even greater improvements.
“With your support the campaign reaches more than 50 million people each year and we are delighted to see how many of you actively get involved in National Smile Month.”
National Smile Month 2017 sees the return of the now iconic smiley, something which Dr Carter believes symbolises exactly the purpose of the campaign.
“Elements such as the smiley enable us to have a real impact. Alongside education, National Smile Month is about having fun and reaching out to people to drive their interest in oral health.
“Share your #MySmileySelfie with us on social media and show how you are helping to provide better oral health for all.”
National Smile Month is being supported by some of the nation’s best-known brands and retailers. Oral-B are platinum sponsors of the campaign, with further support from Wrigley’s Extra, POLO® Sugar Free, Philips and Regenerate.
Jane Kidson, Oral-B Professional Oral Health UK Country Leader, said: “Oral-B, platinum sponsors of National Smile Month, are encouraging practices to support the campaign reminding patients how to improve oral health. Reinforcing daily brushing and eating habits as well as visiting their oral care professional is key to improving the nation’s oral health.”
If you have not done so yet, simply visit www.smilemonth.org/register to support and take part in National Smile Month. Registration only takes a couple of minutes and is completely free, by registering you will receive our amazing National Smile Month Registration Pack which includes everything you need to kick start your personal campaign.
The British Society of Dental Hygiene and Therapy (BSDHT) is a nationally recognised body that represents over 4,000 dental hygienists and dental hygienist/therapists across the UK and beyond.
BSDHT maintain an on-going dialogue with the General Dental Council (GDC), the Departments of Health and all of the main groups representing dental care professionals, and attends meetings of the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Dentistry, bringing dental hygiene and therapy to the attention of government ministers and MP’s.
Visit www.bsdht.org.uk for more information.
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