When I was just 11 years old, I had my first visit to the dentist’s and trust me, it was not entirely an appeasing one. The screaming machines, the many tools on the dentist’s tray, the almost blinding lights and the mouth injection freaked me out, to this day, whenever I step into a dentist’s office, I get the creeps.
I don’t blame my early visit to the dentist on the many sweets that I had eaten before 10, neither do I blame it on the sugars that were cheap then, but I blame it on my teachers, my country and my parents. My teachers because they often talked of HIV and less of tooth decay, my country because of government’s negligence and my parents for not taking me for the regular dental check ups, now, I can’t spend 2 months without getting a dental problem, an ache, or a pain or a hole in the tooth.
It’s saddening that the latest dental statistics in Uganda are dated 1986, and the GoU has done so little to have this looked into. It’s saddening that many of us disregard the fact that dental health is very vital to the extent that 90% of the World population suffer from some form of Dental disease.
Today, we had a tweetchat about Dental Health a head of World Oral Health Day with a few of the dental specialists in Uganda who have also organised free dental checkup tomorrow at Shoprite, Lugogo under their organisation, Uganda Dental Association.
This year under the theme, ‘It all starts here. Healthy Mouth. Healthy Body’ World Oral Health Day will be celebrated on 20th March because children have 20 teeth(often referred to as baby teeth) and also because dentists around the world under their organisation, World Dental Federation, have a goal that adults die at least with 20 teeth.
Dr. Steven advised that should people take regular checks and he also added that prevention is better than cure urging people to see a dentist at least twice a year. When asked how often a toothbrush should be changed, Doctor Steven advised that a toothbrush be changed at least after every 3 months or when the bristles fan out.
“It’s not how hard you brush, it’s how frequent you brush, so you don’t need a toothbrush with very hard bristles and always remember to brush your teeth in circles.” advised Doctor Kalanzi Dunstan.
The most number of people suffering from dental diseases are those in urban areas because of diet as opposed to people in rural areas. Flossing was advised as opposed to use of toothpicks which are generally discouraged by dentists as they can cause gum problems.
Do you have a dental problem, dental disease, any questions concerning your dental health, or do you want to talk to a dentist? The Uganda Dental Association has organised an event from 9am to 5pm tomorrow 19th March at Shoprite Lugogo, feel free to pass by get a free dental checkup and talk to a dentist, all is FREE.
Let’s take charge of our lives, let’s take care of our teeth because a Healthy Mouth breeds a healthy body.