National Smile Month
19 June 2014

Ensuring good dental health this National Smile Month

Our oral health promotion team, part of our special care dental service, have been highlighting the importance of good oral health for all as part of National Smile Month (19 May to 19 June). The team can help vulnerable members of the public to access appropriate dental care.

In Brighton and Hove, alongside regular health promotion clinics, our teams have arranged information sessions at public locations to share tips on good dental health.

Ali McNealy, oral health promotion team leader, regularly visits homeless and vulnerably housed people at Brighton Housing Trust’s First Base daycentre to help improve their dental hygiene.

Ali explains: “Improving your dental hygiene can really boost your self-confidence and improve your health and I’ve had some really positive feedback from the homeless people I’ve supported. One lady told me that she now has the confidence to smile which has really helped her when going for job interviews.

“We understand that looking after your teeth isn’t always a priority when you don’t have a permanent address or have special needs but our advice and support can really have a positive impact on people’s health and wellbeing.”

Sam, a homeless man who regularly visits Ali at First Base, said: “My teeth were falling out before I started getting advice and help from Ali. She has really helped me and my teeth are in much better condition and are looking good now!”

In West Sussex the team have been out and talking to local school children about the importance of dental hygiene and have encouraged some children to take part in local ‘brushathons’.