FDI celebrates World Oral Health Day

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FDI sends unifying video message in celebration of World Oral Health Day

Thu. 21. March 2024


GENEVA, Switzerland: “A happy mouth is a happy body,” FDI World Dental Federation said on World Oral Health Day (WOHD). Celebrated annually on 20 March, WOHD aims to advance oral health globally through the sharing of knowledge as a tool of empowerment. FDI’s message for this year is shared in a video that brings together voices from governments, the private sector and advocacy organisations for chronic health conditions. The initiative underscores the urgent need for collective action to ensure universal access to oral healthcare and to support systemic health worldwide.

“We say that a happy mouth is essential for a happy body because the two are intricately connected and mutually influence each other. Understanding this connection is vital to improve the quality of life for countless people around the world,” explained FDI President Dr Greg Chadwick.

Moreover, maintaining good oral health may contribute to preventing other chronic health conditions, such as heart and respiratory disease, cancer and diabetes. Regrettably, oral diseases rank as the most prevalent health conditions globally, affecting nearly 3.5 billion people, according to World Health Organization estimates. Given this unacceptably heavy burden, it is crucial to raise awareness through WOHD about the importance of brushing with a fluoride toothpaste, having regular dental check-ups and avoiding risk factors such as smoking and consuming foods high in sugars. However, “no single entity can effectively tackle oral health issues alone,” emphasised Dr Anna Lella, WOHD Task Team chair. “This is why FDI has made it its mission to catalyse partnerships, networks, policies and programmes to advance oral health as an essential component of overall health and well-being,” she explained.

By working with organisations like the NCD Alliance, World Heart Federation, International Diabetes Federation and International Pharmaceutical Federation, FDI advocates for collaboration across health conditions and professions to safeguard people’s health. By mobilising its members and partnering with industry leaders like WOHD partners Dentsply Sirona, 3M Health Care, Smile Train and Haleon, FDI strives to shape the future of oral health by promoting prevention, early detection and treatment of oral disease. Public and private partnerships as well as sustained political commitment by governments are key to achieving equitable access to quality oral healthcare and achieving general health and well-being for all.

Dr Chadwick stressed: “Effective collaboration across sectors and stakeholders is imperative to achieve universal coverage for oral health. We must work together to eliminate disparities so that, by 2030, oral health becomes a universally accessible right.”

FDI said that its WOHD video serves as a call to action for cooperative efforts in oral healthcare: “Together, we can improve lives worldwide. Share [the video] widely this World Oral Health Day!”

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