Oral Health Public Consultation
Local people are being encouraged to get their teeth into a new consultation document all about oral health.
NHS Ayrshire & Arran's draft Oral Health Strategy was approved for formal consultation by Ayrshire and Arran NHS Board when they met on Wednesday 23 May 2012. The consultation will run until Friday 31 August.
Dr Carol Davidson, Executive Director of Public Health, explains: "We want the people of Ayrshire and Arran to have the best possible oral health - whatever their age, physical health or personal circumstances. Poor oral health can have a profound impact on people's overall health and wellbeing. I would therefore urge people to have a look at the draft strategy - or our small booklet which summarises it - and tell us about their priorities for dental health."
Good oral health is essential for overall health. The main oral diseases are caries (decay), periodontal (gum) disease and oral cancer, all of which are largely preventable. Oral diseases can result in pain, infection, tooth loss, reduction in quality of life and, in the case of oral cancer, death. These are common diseases which have an impact on general health, wellbeing and death rates. The impact on the economy is also substantial. It is estimated that between 12 and 15 million working days are lost each year because of dental problems.
Local people have benefited from a number of significant developments during the lifespan of NHS Ayrshire & Arran's previous oral health strategy. For example:
The number of primary one and primary seven children free from obvious tooth decay exceeded national targets in 2010
The number of dentists has increased; and 80 per cent of the local population is registered with a dentist, compared with 74 per cent of the Scottish population
Introduction of the Childsmile programme in nurseries, schools and dental practices
Developing and delivering oral care training programmes for older people in care homes and for adults with additional needs.
The new ten-year strategy wants to develop these and other initiatives further. It focuses on the needs of people at every stage of their lives - from childhood through adulthood, for people with additional needs, experiencing homelessness or in prison, and for vulnerable older people, who often need support to keep their teeth and gums healthy.
A copy of the full draft strategy, and the summary consultation booklet, is available on our website, www.nhsaaa.net by selecting 'How to get involved'.
You can also ask for a paper copy of the complete strategy and action plan, and send your views, by writing to:
NHS Ayrshire & Arran
Oral Health Promotion
Ayrshire Central Hospital
Irvine, KA12 8SS
or emailing Mhairi McMillan, Project Co-ordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The consultation booklet also offers the option of typing in your views, saving the file and emailing it.
The closing date for responses is 31 August 2012.