6th May 2022

National Smile Month 2024: Raising Awareness Of Oral Health Issues

National Smile Month 2024 is here and we’re here to help promote the importance of having good oral health and the value of a healthy smile! Between 17th May and 17th June, the Oral Health Foundation is working to raise awareness of important oral health issues and we’re here to help share tips and advice on how to look after your smile and overall oral health.

Maintaining a healthy smile is relatively simple, but for some people it can be difficult. Despite the huge improvements in oral health over the past 40 years, there are still some barriers to be crossed and oral disease is still far too common. Here are four key National Smile Month messages to keep in mind when it comes to better oral health:

Brush your teeth for two minutes a day, in the morning and last thing at night, with a fluoride toothpaste.
Clean in between your teeth at least every other day.
Cut down your intake of sugary foods and drinks.
Visit your dentist regularly.
Maintaining healthy teeth and gums is a lifelong commitment and learning proper dental hygiene habits means that it’s easier to avoid costly dental procedures and long-term health issues in the future. In celebration of National Smile Month 2024, here are some further tips and advice on recognising and preventing oral health issues.

Symptoms Of Dental and Oral Health Issues

You shouldn’t wait until you have symptoms to visit your dentist, as often this means that the symptoms have developed and could require more work. Visiting your dentist twice a year means that your dentist will usually be able to spot any issues or problems before symptoms begin. If you experience any of these signs, then you should make an appointment to see your dentist as soon as possible.

  • Ulcers, sores or tender areas that won’t heal
  • Bleeding or swollen gums, especially after flossing or brushing
  • Sudden sensitivity to hot or cold foods and drinks
  • Chronic bad breath or dry mouth
  • Pain, toothache and loose teeth
  • Swelling or pain when chewing or biting

Causes Of Dental and Oral Diseases

Your mouth is home to all sorts of bacteria and, whilst some of them are part of the normal flora of your mouth, there are some which can cause and contribute to dental and oral diseases. As part of National Smile Month 2024, we’re helping to spread awareness of these diseases and how they can affect your health.

Often, bacteria that lives in your mouth are generally harmless, there are some instances where it can become damaging to your teeth, oral health and overall wellbeing. Bacteria that lives near your gum line can create a sticky substance called plaque, which can then accumulate and harden, causing tartar that can be tricky to remove. Regular brushing and flossing can help to prevent this build up, but if left, it can cause your gums to inflame, leading to potential gingivitis.

We use our teeth and mouths a lot during the day, so it isn’t surprising that, over time, things can go wrong, especially if you don’t maintain proper oral care. A lot of dental and oral diseases can be prevented with proper hygiene, but you are likely to experience at least one dental problem during your lifetime.

Cavities

Cavities, also known as tooth decay, are areas of the tooth or teeth which have been permanently damaged and may even develop small holes, which can often be painless meaning that you don’t realise they are there. Cavities are a fairly common dental complaint and occur when food, bacteria and acid coat your teeth and form plaque. The acid sitting on your teeth can start to eat away at the enamel and then the dentin which lies underneath and then, over time, this leads to permanent damage.

Sensitive Teeth

Although not a disease, sensitive teeth can have a huge impact on your oral health and can be the result or an indication of further dental issues. If you have sensitive teeth, then you’ll likely feel discomfort or pain whilst having hot or cold foods or drinks. It can sometimes occur after root canal, fillings or having braces removed, but can also be the result of gum disease, receding gums or worn down crowns or fillings.

Most of the time, sensitive teeth can be treated at home with a change in your daily hygiene routine. There are toothpastes and mouthwashes specially formulated for sensitive teeth.

Oral Cancers

Oral cancers can include cancer of the gums, tongue, lips, cheeks or palate of the mouth and in most cases, dentists are often the first person to recognise the symptoms of oral cancers. Alcohol and tobacco use are amongst some of the biggest risk factors when it comes to oral cancers. If you notice a lump in your mouth, ulcers or sores that don’t heal or frequent bleeding, then you should get these checked out as soon as possible. The earlier that oral cancer is diagnosed, the better the outcome.

Our oral health is hugely important and, in recent years, there have been connections made between our oral health and general wellbeing. A healthy mouth can help to maintain a healthy body. Looking after your oral health is vital and this National Smile Month, we’re here to help you with any oral or dental concerns you may have. Contact Dental Solutions today to arrange a checkup, or get in touch with us if you have any questions or concerns about your dental health and we’ll be happy to help!

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Michael Sparke
Michael Sparke
2024-05-17
Initially I was quite apprehensive about having 2 implants, but upon my consultation with Gavin ., i felt encouraged by his knowledge and advice . The whole experience in a very relaxed atmosphere could not have been any better. I am well impressed by their professionalism and expertise in this Practice and would most certainly give them a Top Class recommendation .
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Kay Burton
2024-05-15
I just had my implant fitted today, the whole process was painless, I'm so pleased with everything and would highly recommend Dental solutions, the whole team was fabulous 👌
Mike White
Mike White
2024-01-29
The best experience. When you step through the door you are met by the friendliest receptionist,Which continues through the practice. If you want the best dental care and treatments across the board this is where you need to go.
Charlotte Bell
Charlotte Bell
2023-12-15
I came to dental solutions with severe anxiety of dentists and Lauren was so helpful, kind and patient with me. For the first time in years I've found a dentist who I feel comfortable with. Thank you
Gill S
Gill S
2023-10-27
I had a wisdom tooth extracted by Gavin after having toothache due to my tooth breaking. I was nervous as I had not had a tooth removed by injection before. Gavin was reassuring, explained the procedure fully and it was over quickly with no pain. All staff at the practice are caring, friendly and professional and I have been going for many years. I highly recommend Dental Solutions.
K.WEDGE
K.WEDGE
2023-09-06
Thank you to Gavin and team at Dental Solutions for the superb dental work done yesterday. As well as being highly professional and very good at what they do the place has a great atmosphere which makes going to the dentist a pleasure.
tracy grensinger
tracy grensinger
2023-07-02
Amazing experience. I felt in safe friendly professional hands with all the team . Thank you!
Zoe Manley
Zoe Manley
2023-06-30
Can’t speak highly enough of this practice and in particular Lauren. 2 years ago I walked in and was so nervous I cried just as the sight of the chair. Her and the staff have been so patient and understanding and have worked with me to overcome my phobia. This week I had a filling and was absolutely fine, my family couldn’t believe it. Reception staff are lovely and really accommodating too. So glad I found them, I don’t dread the dentist anymore.
David Partridge
David Partridge
2023-05-10
A really Five Star Dental Practice! Upon arrival I was greeted by their most friendly welcoming receptionists. it seems nothing is 'too much trouble' to them. Gavin is similarly very friendly and the surgery is kitted out with the most high-tech modern equipment. On my first visit Gavin examined my teeth and explained my options to me giving me his recommendation for treatment and reasons why. Their Co-ordinator prepared a detailed quote for my treatment and went through it in detail with me, ensuring I understood everything; she had plenty of time for me as a patient. From the outset I had complete confidence in entrusting them with my dental care and the final results are truly amazing. Gavin and Richard could not have been more professional and my treatment was made as painless as possible. Dental Solutions provide a truly outstanding service and I thank them for my new 'long lost' smile and renewed confidence, especially when dining out and talking with people. I can't recommend them too highly.
Carole Dodwell
Carole Dodwell
2023-05-08
A first class experience from start to finish. Despite being fearful of visiting the dentist, Gavin put me at ease with his gentle unhurried manner. I was surprised at how relaxed I actually felt undergoing treatment for a crown and the removal/replacement of front teeth veneers. Having felt self conscious about my front teeth for a long time, I decided to have my old veneers replaced. The results were amazing and far exceeded my expectations. What Gavin achieved was nothing short of a work of art, boosting my confidence tenfold. The practice itself is very welcoming, the customer service excellent and the staff are all very friendly and kind. I cannot recommend this dental practise highly enough.
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