World Oral Health Day is a global observance holiday celebrated annually on March 20. The day was created to spread awareness about good oral hygiene. The holiday is sponsored and marketed by F.D.I. World Dental Federation, the day has presented itself as a flagship forum to discuss and talk about dental care and oral hygiene. On this day, dentists and oral Hygienists use various platforms to educate people on achieving good oral hygiene and expanding on different treatments.
History of World Oral Health Day
Ancient Egyptian and Chinese texts have revealed that cultures have maintained the importance of maintaining good oral hygiene for decades now. From using primitive tools like porcupine quills, fish bones, or feathers to slightly advanced use of tree barks, In one form or the other, oral health has been essential in all cultures.
In China, by the 1400s, the people started making bristles plucked from cold climate pigs, fixed them to some bone or wood, and used them as toothbrushes. During the same time in Europe, salt was mixed in a solution of brandy and water, and it was used to rinse clean the mouth, and then some sponge was used to rub the teeth to remove anything stuck between the teeth.
So, in one way or the other, as advancements were made in oral health, there were also cases of a majority of people who did not care about oral hygiene. Diseases began to emerge for which there was no cure. Traditional herbs were used to manage the ailments, but it was not until 1880 that nurses started providing prophylaxis treatment to prevent disease.
Dentists emerged shortly after with specific dental techniques that were used to treat dental and oral conditions. Federation Dentaire International (F.D.I.) has been the most vocal force behind spreading oral health awareness. In their hundred-plus years of existence, the group has promoted and emphasized the importance of oral health and hygiene.
Their campaign to spread awareness on the importance of maintaining good oral hygiene bore fruit in 2013 when the first global-scale day was announced to celebrate World Oral Health Day.
Since 2013, every year’s Oral Health Day has followed a specific theme.
The first theme was Healthy Teeth for Healthy Life, and similarly, 2014 had its unique theme. These themes have centered around a specific message for the year. They are building awareness in people gradually but consistently so that they start giving importance to oral hygiene.
World Oral Health Day timeline
Dental nurses use prophylaxis to prevent and treat dental infections.
An international body is formed to set dental practices and research advancements in oral and dental hygiene.
The world celebrates the first World Oral Health Day.
The World Dental Federation announces a three-year-long theme to promote a worldwide campaign to achieve perfect oral health.
World Oral Health Day FAQs
How can I maintain good oral health?
Brushing after every meal or at least twice a day, flossing regularly, using a mouthwash, avoiding sugary items and tobacco, drinking lots of water are a few ways by which you can maintain good oral health. But it is also suggested to visit a dentist once every six months.
Which is the most common oral disease?
Dental caries, commonly known as tooth decay or cavities, is the most common oral disease.
What type of toothbrush and toothpaste are good for my teeth?
Toothbrushes with soft bristles are ideal. Any toothpaste with approval from F.D.I., F.D.A., or ADA is good for brushing teeth.
How to Observe World Oral Health Day
Brush your teeth
Start with yourself, brush your teeth, floss, use a mouthwash, and there, a perfect minty fresh oxygenated mouth for the rest of the day.
Talk about Oral Hygiene
Talk about the importance of oral hygiene and contribute to spreading awareness. Make it a trend on social media to invite others to the cause.
Visit a dentist for a checkup
Today would be a great day to go for a dental checkup as you can get discounted rates for a visit.
5 Facts About Oral Health Everyone Should Know
2.3 billion suffer from tooth decay
Oral diseases affect 3.5 billion people globally, of which 90% of the ailments belong to tooth decay.
Oral health is not just teeth and mouth
Many people believe that oral health pertains to teeth only, however, this is incorrect as oral health refers to the head, face, and oral cavity.
Tobacco and sugar
The two most deadly contributors to bad oral health are tobacco and sugar.
Essential to overall well being
Maintaining good oral health is crucial to maintaining overall good health.
F.D.I sponsored ‘Be proud of your mouth’
The F.D.I. initiated a campaign to encourage people to practice good oral hygiene to successfully improve their health, social and mental status.
Why World Oral Health Day is Important
Oral hygiene is important
Not caring about your oral hygiene can make your overall existence difficult. It will not only cause pain and disease but also prevent you from being socially confident.
Awareness needs to spread
Oral hygiene is a very neglected topic for many people. Just because problems are not surfacing, they stay ignorant towards the importance of maintaining oral hygiene and then suffer from diseases.
Teeth are beautiful and important
A newborn child is toothless, and only they look cute when they smile without teeth, not adults. Not caring for teeth will not only make you look odd when tooth decay or loss set in but also make eating, talking, and smiling difficult.
World Oral Health Day dates