PUnilever Ghana has marked this year’s World Oral Health Day with a call on Ghanaians to take oral health seriously.
The Chief of Staff, Madam Akosua Frema Osei Opare speaking at the ceremony to mark the day at the Black Stars Square, in Accra yesterday on the theme “Say ahh, act on mouth health” said the government was taking the oral health needs of Ghanaians seriously, however, the fight must not be left alone for government, parents and all and sundry must join the fight.
She revealed that a recent survey by Unilever Ghana indicated that 40 per cent of 12-year olds in Ghana suffer from decayed teeth, missing teeth, stained teeth and bad breath adding that “these are alarming statistics.”
The Chief of Staff said the affected children turn to be slow and negatively impacted educationally, many skip school, classes due to the discomfort associated with poor oral health, and even those who do make it to class do not actively participate or give off their best either because they are in pain or they have stained teeth and are too shy to contribute in class for fear of being teased by their peers.
Indeed bad oral health has very negative consequences for our children, they may be good looking, well adorned in the best attires but have no friends to socialise with because he or she is being shunned by other kids in school.
She therefore encouraged children to brush their teeth twice a day adding that “there is no magic to cure oral health issues than this.”
She congratulated Unilever Ghana and its brand Pepsodent for helping to commemorate the 2019 World Oral Health Day with many impactful activities to address the issue of poor oral health in various schools.
She urged all present to rally and spread the word and reach children how to practice better oral health habits, adding that the change starts with “You and I”.
Deputy Minister of Health, Madam Tina Mensah who represented sector minister Kwaku Agyemang Manu said the Ministry was passionately subscribing to realisation of the Sustainable Development Goal 3 which seeks to ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all ages by 2030.
“We continue to act on mass health by bridging the gap between dentists and the populace, but the harsh reality is that most dentists like other health workers want to be in urban areas and this affects our brothers and sisters in the remote areas,” she said.
The Personal Care Director of Unilever Ghana, Nana Yaa Owusu Ansah said the theme for this year’s celebration “Say arrrh, act on mouth health” sought to encourage behavioural change around oral health with the goal of helping to reduce current levels of tooth decay and oral pain.
According to her, to establish a strong case for oral care in Ghana, Unilever Ghana had launched a white paper from the global study that was conducted by Pepsodent, to prove the hypothesis that the good smile takes you further.
“By simply brushing twice daily, day and night children can prevent many of these oral issues and that is why Pepsodent has partnered with the Ghana Dental Association with support from the Ghana Health Service, Ghana Education Service, Ministry of Education and Ministry of Health to roll out the yearly Pepsodent Day and Night Brushing Campaign in schools,” she said.
By Raymond Ackumey