Simplyhealth dental survey - the hidden impact of poor oral health
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Encouragingly, the results of our recent dental survey indicate that a large proportion of British adults are aware of how the health of their mouth can impact on other elements of their health. However, it seems what isn’t so positive is that 20% of British adults do not perform simple tasks such as brushing their teeth twice a day, to help keep their mouth healthy

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Simplyhealth dental survey - the hidden impact of poor oral health Document Transcript

  • 1. Simplyhealth is a trading name of Simplyhealth Access, which is authorised by the PrudentialRegulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and Prudential RegulationAuthority. Simplyhealth Access is registered and incorporated in England and Wales, registered no.183035. Registered office, Hambleden House, Waterloo Court, Andover, Hampshire, SP10 1LQ.Your calls may be recorded and monitored for training and quality assurance purposes.1304030-healthThe hidden impact of poor oral healthIntroductionEncouragingly, the results of our recent dental surveyindicate that a large proportion of British adults are aware ofhow the health of their mouth can impact on other elementsof their health. However, it seems what isn’t so positive isthat 20% of British adults do not perform simple tasks suchas brushing their teeth twice a day, to help keep their mouthhealthy.The impact on overall healthNearly seven in ten (67%) people are aware that the healthof their mouth can have an impact on other elements of theirhealth. A third of people polled think that poor oral healthis linked to cardiovascular disease1and a clued up 59% ofpeople think that poor oral health is linked to mouth cancer2.However, only 24% are aware that having diabetes3canincrease the risk of gum disease, whilst a significant four outof ten (40%) UK adults don’t know that having osteoporosis4can increase the risk of tooth loss.Only a small number of British adults are aware that poororal health is linked to dementia6(6%), pancreatic cancer7(5%) and rheumatoid arthritis8(5%). Perhaps of greatestconcern is that 22% of British adults would not change theircurrent habits if they thought poor oral health was linkedwith more serious health conditions.Bad dental habitsAs children, most of us are taught to brush our teeth twicea day. However, our survey shows that two in ten peopleadmit to not brushing their teeth in the morning and at night.Whilst almost a quarter (23%) of UK adults avoid fizzy oracidic drinks, only 11% leave half an hour after eating beforebrushing and even less (9%) drink water after eating fruit ordrinking fruit juices. Acids and sugars in foods weakens andsoftens the enamel on your teeth. This means that if youclean your teeth too soon after eating when the enamel isstill soft, you are slowly brushing away the protective coatingon your teeth.Ensuring that you take good care of your oral health, bybrushing, flossing, using interdental brushes and usingalcohol free mouthwash for example all contributes towardshealthy teeth and gums.About our researchThe research was conducted by OnePoll using an online fieldworkmethodology. OnePoll surveyed 5,000 working adults from 25 March to2 April 2013. The research abides by the Market Research Society (MRS)code of conduct and is based around principles of data protection legislationand research ethics. The MRS code has the confidence of the businesscommunity, Government and regulators.1 BMJ 2010;340:c2451 doi:10.1136/bmj.c2451 www.bmj.com/content/340/bmj.c24512 British Dental Health Foundation 2013. Avaliable from www.dentalhealth.org/tell-me-about/topic/mouth-cancer/mouth-cancer [accessed 15 April 2013]3 Jansson,H., Lindholm, E., Lindh, C., Groop, L., and Bratthall, G., 2006. Tyoe 2 diabetesand risk for periodontal disease: a role for dental health awareness. Journal of ClinicalPeriodontology, Vol 33, issue 6, pp408-4144 Nicopoulou-Karayianni K, et al. Tooth loss and osteoporosis: the osteodent study. J ClinPeriodontol, 2009, 36, 190-75 www.diabetes.org.uk [Accessed 17 April 2013]6 Paganini, A., White, S., & Atchison, K. 2012. Dentition, Dental Health Habits, andDementia: The Leisure World Cohort Study. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society,Vol 60, Issue 87 Michaud, D., Joshipura, K., Giovannucci, E., and Fuchs, C., 2007. A Prospective Studyof Periodontal Disease and Pancreatic Cancer in US Male Health Professionals. NationalCancer Institure, Vol 99: p171-1758 Mercado, F., Marshall, R., Klestov, A., & Bartold, P., 2001 Relationship BetweenRheumatoid Arthritis and Periodontitis. Journal of Peridontology, Vol 72, No 6People with diabetes can be up to three timesmore likely to develop gum disease, Diabetes UK 576% of British adults aged 55+ think thatthe health of your mouth can impact otherelements of your health, compared with just58% of 18-24 year olds6% of British adults are embarrassed by the stateof their teeth