8 Nov 2010

Isle of Man residents urged to give feedback on oral health strategy

Isle of Man residents urged to give feedback on oral health strategy
Health ministers on the Isle of Man are urging residents to give their feedback on the new oral health strategy.

The document was published online in September and residents were invited to leave comments and ideas; they now have just one day left to submit their comments. Health Minister David Anderson said he would like to remind members of the public about the closing date and encourage them to give their feedback on the oral health strategy.

The principal aim of the strategy is to improve children’s oral health on the island; this goal comes in light of worrying statistics, which revealed that more than half of five year olds suffered from tooth decay. Standards of oral health are poor in comparison to England and Wales and ministers are trying to find new ways to improve standards and promote good oral health.

The new strategy also suggests improved access to dental care services, better emergency dental services and focusing on prevention rather than cure.

Ministers are planning to focus on children and provide preventative treatments, including sealant and fluoride treatments; currently, the Island does not have fluoridated water supplies and this has been identified as a possible cause of poor oral health. Fluoride helps to strengthen the teeth and protect them against decay; numerous studies have linked fluoridated water supplies to better standards of oral health. There are no plans to establish fluoridation plants; however, fluoride varnish treatments will help to protect children’s teeth and reduce the risk of decay.

Children will also be taught about oral health from an early age so that they can learn to look after their teeth and gums properly. Educational sessions will provide information about healthy eating, visiting the dentist and oral hygiene.

They never give up trying to ram fluoride down our throats!

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