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Plea or Mindset Change On Oral Health

Plea or Mindset Change On Oral Health
Participants, oral and dentistry practitioners from all over Fiji during the Fiji Dental Association (FDA) Conference at the Hilton Fiji Beach Resort and Spa on Denarau, Nadi. Photos: Peni Komaisavai
August 06
12:40 2018

Fijians have been urged to change their mindset and prioritise their oral health.

The plea has come from Fiji Dental Asso­ciation resident, Dr Avikash Singh, whose term in office ended with the annual gen­eral meeting yesterday.

“People do not understand the importance of keeping their teeth and gums healthy given that it can affect their lives in many ways,” Dr Singh told the Fiji Sun in an in­terview.

He said the loss of teeth affected appear­ance whereas gum infections could be cata­strophic in terms of changing a person’s diet and lifestyle.

“For example let us say if someone’s teeth are pulled out, they will have to change their eating habits and would have to resort to eating mashed food, which in turn affects their whole body where they would not be able to take certain foods, thus limiting their eating span.”

Dr Singh said the rise in Non-Communica­ble Diseases (NCDs) was directly linked to oral health in many proven ways.

He highlighted that one of the reasons some oral health associated diseases had gone unnoticed was that there was no avail­able up-to-date national data on them.

Participants, oral and dentistry practitioners from all over Fiji during the Fiji Dental Association (FDA) Conference at the Hilton Fiji Beach Resort and Spa on Denarau, Nadi. Photos: Peni Komaisavai

Participants, oral and dentistry practitioners from all over Fiji during the Fiji Dental Association (FDA) Conference at the Hilton Fiji Beach Resort and Spa on Denarau, Nadi. Photos: Peni Komaisavai

“Because if we know the prevalence of diseases, what are the implications and the source then we would be able to plan and de­liver treatment to our patients and we will find solutions to address it, but with no data, you cannot do anything,” Dr Singh said

He said even business owners had to ob­tain many information and data on where they would want to establish their business­es before establishing it.

“In terms of the type of areas, customers and products they should be selling in a par­ticular area in order for their business to flourish, we can apply that same principle to oral health. We need data,” Dr Singh said.

However, he said there was a common mis­conception that NCDs-related diseases were caused by specific unhealthy lifestyles, but in truth, it was linked to oral health given that they could be caused by poor diet.

“For instance, if a person does not have a good set of teeth then they will not be able to eat certain nutritious foods because of the limitations they have, so they would resort to eating less healthier food to substitute the healthier ones and this contributes to NCDs,” he said.

Edited by Epineri Vula

Feedback: peni.komaisavai@fijisun.com.fj

 

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