Watch your mouth this Dental Health Week

IN honour of Dental Health Week (6-12 August), the Australian Dental Association (ADA) is reminding the 50 per cent of Australians who don’t bush their teeth twice a day to “watch your mouth.”

This comes on the back of the latest national survey, which reveals that Australians are not very good at prioritising their oral health.

Earlier this year, the ADA launched Australia’s Oral Health Tracker, which included data showing that just more than half of Australians (52 per cent) were only brushing once a day instead of the recommended twice daily.

It also showed that nearly two in five (38 per cent) never floss or clean between their teeth and that seven out of 10 (69 per cent) only go to the dentist when they have a problem.

“Dental Health Week is a national oral health promotion event,” chairman of the Oral Health Committee Professor David Manton said.

“It gives us all a chance to take a look at our oral health, learn more about why a healthy mouth is so important and share tips on how to improve and maintain it.

“Watching your mouth will help maintain your general health as well.”

Tooth decay is Australia’s most common disease with one in five adults suffering from tooth decay and one in five with gum disease.

This year’s tagline for Dental Health Week is “Watch Your Mouth”, insinuating that not only should we be caring for our teeth, but our entire mouth health.

“Watching your mouth means brushing and flossing, eating a healthy diet, lowering sugar and alcohol intake, stopping smoking and seeing the dentist regularly for a check-up,” Professor Manton said.

“These good oral hygiene habits will greatly reduce the risk of oral disease.”

General tips for good oral health include:

  • Bush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste.
  • Clean in between teeth with floss or interdental brushes.
  • Eat a healthy diet and limit sugary food and drinks.
  • Visit the dentist regularly.

For more information about Dental Health Week, visit www.dentalhealthweek.com.au.