Posted: Fri 22nd Jul 2016

Mobile dental unit makes first stop in Buckley during national smile month

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Friday, Jul 22nd, 2016

To mark National Smile Month, a specially-equipped Mobile Dental Unit has visited Marleyfield House Day Care Centre in Buckley. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

It gave older residents, who may not regularly visit a dentist, the chance to have a full check-up. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The Gwên am Byth team are spreading the three key messages in maintaining oral hygiene: brush your teeth twice a day, always last thing at night and at one other time; cut down on sugary food and drinks; and visit your dentist regularly. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

According to UK Adult Dental Health Surveys, more than 50% of people aged 75 and over now have some natural teeth, so there is a need to spread the message that it’s important to maintain them. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Sian Chelton, Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board Oral Health Promotion Manager, said: ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“We’ve seen some people we were very glad to see. Some haven’t been to a dentist in a long, long time and need treatment. With people living longer, it’s really important that we try and stop problems before they start. With regular check-ups from our dentists, and advice and guidance on common dental issues from our Dental Health Educators, we can do that.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

This is currently the only unit in the whole of North Wales specially designed to provide care on site for elderly people living in care homes in the whole of North Wales, and the service could be especially helpful for those with early on-set dementia for whom a visit to a surgery could be particularly difficult. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Specialist Dentist Dr Daniella Garcia Lucas says the earlier advice starts and patterns are put in place, the better the results: ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“There is a small window of opportunity in which we can effectively address any dental health issues among those people with dementia, because their ability to comprehend routine tasks may become inhibited, it is therefore essential we try and deal with any problems early on.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

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