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World Oral Health Day: Ms.Shaina Ganapathy, Head of Community Outreach, Embassy Group

Posted on: 18/Mar/2023 3:55:58 PM
"Oral hygiene is a largely neglected health issue in India. Indians are widely affected by tooth decay, periodontal disease, and oral cancer. With almost 8590% of adults facing oral health problems, India is considered the world capital for oral cancer. This begins during childhood due to a lack of awareness and an unequal distribution of oral health care amongst India`s underprivileged population.

Over the last 6 years, Embassy and its corporate and NGO partners have been working to provide a holistic health and hygiene programme that focuses on the provision of preventative health kits and awareness three times a year, along with annual check-ups. Included in the kit are a tube of toothpaste, a toothbrush, and a tongue cleaner for each student, which are supplemented with regular awareness sessions on how to correctly and efficiently use them. This year, we distributed health kits to over 41,000 government school students across India.

We created an oral hygiene storybook on the importance of dental care, which includes a calendar to help students ensure they brush their teeth twice a day. 15,000 books, titled Swami`s New Lesson, were translated into 4 languages and distributed across government schools in Bangalore, Pune, Chennai, Noida, and Mumbai. During our annual comprehensive health screenings, doctors help students understand any dental issues they might be facing and guide them on how to take the best care of their teeth. This year, more than 16,000 children across 68 government schools were screened.

Understanding common dental problems and why they happen will help children learn how to prevent them. Untreated dental conditions can cause poor and misaligned tooth development, leading to more serious problems as a child grows up.

We must do our best to teach children across our country how to take care of themselves, especially those who have little or no access to regular dental care."

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