An initiative to make oral care more inclusive, accessible and positive for people with disabilities, their caregivers and dental professionals.

  • New European-wide research released by Oral-B reveals 1/3 of the 166 million people in Europe,*+ who are affected by a disability in some way, have experienced gum issues in the past year*.
  • Of the people surveyed in the UK, France, Germany and Italy, almost HALF of people (47%) with disabilities have not been taught how to brush their teeth properly* and over a fifth (23%) of disabled Europeans feel demotivated when it comes to maintaining their oral health*.

The brand is on a mission to change this with the launch of THE BIG RETHINK, its social ambition to ensure that everybody has an equitable oral care experience – whether that’s at home or in the dental chair. 

To launch THE BIG RETHINK campaign, the brand is working together with the International Association for Disability and Oral Health (iADH) to help inform the approach.  The first step of this partnership is the launch of the ‘Positive Practices’ programme, designed to train and educate dental practices on how to become more confident and inclusive when it comes to their patients.   The programme will not only enable Oral-B to become more educated on the physical and mental needs of those with different types of disabilities, but it will also help them to learn how to adapt their product offering and improve the oral health outcomes of those with disabilities.  THE BIG RETHINK Content Hub will also offer relevant and helpful content for people with disabilities, their caregivers and families, as well as the professional dental health community.  Visit:

To celebrate the launch of THE BIG RETHINK, a brand film was unveiled at an exclusive launch event in Frankfurt, Germany.  The event was an opportunity to set out the ambitions of THE BIG RETHINK and discuss the findings of The Oral Health & Disability European Study with an influential panel of speakers.  Including P&G’s Chief Executive Officer for Healthcare, Jennifer Davis, iADH spokesperson, Johanna Norderyd, British broadcaster, Nikki Fox, British influencer James Hunt from Stories About Autism and popular German actor, Andre Dietz.

Jennifer Davis, P&G Chief Executive Officer, Healthcare says: “We recognise the importance of making oral care accessible to all. We are indeed at the beginning of a very exciting journey and will continue to learn from both dental professionals and consumers to ensure we are creating positive oral care solutions for everyone – I really believe that this is the beginning of an initiative that has a global footprint.”

Benjamin Binot, P&G Europe Oral Care Senior Vice President comments: “Addressing the significant oral health inequalities experienced by people with disabilities in Europe is a huge priority for us. Our research shows that today, there are many oral health struggles amongst this audience – 1 in 5 (20%) of those with severe disabilities find brushing all their teeth physically challenging* and over a third of people with disabilities feel anxious or frustrated when it comes to visiting the dentist*.  We want to help change this and believe that everyone should have an equitable oral health experience.  Through our work with the iADH and the creation of the Positive Practices programme, we want to not only provide dental practices with educational materials to make their practices more inclusive, but also give the disabled community the tools they need to have more autonomy over their own oral health.

Alison Dougall, Professor in Special Care Dentistry, and an Executive Board member of iADH says; “We are delighted to have partnered with Oral-B to address the oral health struggles that are experienced by people with disabilities in Europe. Our shared values will enable us to make a huge difference to the oral care experience for people living with visible and nonvisible disabilities.  We recognise that many healthcare professionals have not received education in special care dentistry during their training, and so by raising awareness around the issue and supporting those with disabilities, we can help to make small but significant adjustments to their oral health routines.”  

About the research

  • The Oral Health & Disability European Study – UK, France, Germany and Italy, was conducted by Reputation Leaders.
  • The studies were conducted between 2021 – 2022 in Germany (n=1034), France (n=1009), UK (n=2029) and Italy (n=1002). In each country the online survey sample was recruited and reported to be representative of the total adult population by age, gender and region.
  • The margin of error of a sample of 5000 adults is +/- 1.4% at a 95% confidence level for the 4 leading economies.  
  • At a country level, the margin of error of the sample relative to the total adult population was UK n=2000 (+/- 2.2%), Germany, France and Italy,  n=1000 (+/- 3.1%)

+ Assumes total EU and UK population, 2022

About The iADH (International Association for Disability and Oral Health)

The iADH is a global organization with over 8000 members from all sectors of health and social care interested in disability and oral health who work to share their scientific knowledge, research, clinical skills and collective experience to reduce barriers to care and improve oral health outcomes for people with disability

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