Did you know that your oral health can offer clues about your overall health — or that problems in your mouth can affect the rest of your body? Understand the intimate connection between oral health and overall health and what you can do to protect yourself.
What’s the connection between oral health and overall health? Like many areas of the body, your mouth is teeming with bacteria — most of them harmless. Normally the body’s natural defenses and good oral health care, such as daily brushing and flossing, can keep these bacteria under control. However, without proper oral hygiene, bacteria can reach levels that might lead to oral infections, such as tooth decay and gum disease.
In addition, certain medications — such as decongestants, antihistamines, painkillers and diuretics — can reduce saliva flow. Saliva washes away food and neutralizes acids produced by bacteria in the mouth, helping to protect you from microbial invasion or overgrowth that might lead to disease.
Studies also suggest that oral bacteria and the inflammation associated with periodontitis — a severe form of gum disease — might play a role in some diseases. In addition, certain diseases, such as diabetes and HIV/AIDS, can lower the body’s resistance to infection, making oral health problems more severe.
I’m reaching out to you on behalf of the Ad Council and The Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives (a coalition of more than 35 leading dental health organizations) to ask for your support promoting good tooth-brushing habits recommended by dental experts.
More than 51 million school hours are lost each year due to dental related illness, resulting in parents losing 25 million work hours annually. Cavities and oral infections can cause severe pain and can increase a child’s risk for dental issues and poor health throughout their lives.
3 in 4 parents report that their kids sometimes or frequently forget to brush their teeth, according to a national survey just released by the Ad Council. In an effort to help parents better understand why ignoring dental health can have serious consequences, and educate families about good dental health habits, the Ad Council and The Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives created Public Service Ads (PSAs) for their Kids’ Healthy Mouths campaign. The new PSAs are humorous depictions of life lessons which make the point that while parenting can be tricky at times, getting kids to brush for two minutes, twice a day can be easier than most other things parents will try to teach their children.
The English and Spanish-language PSA’s direct parents and caregivers to the campaign website, 2min2x.org (which is available in English and Spanish, and includes a mobile version), where parents and children can watch entertaining videos—all 2 minutes in length—while brushing their teeth.
In December, the Ad Council kicked off its first ever video contest with Zooppa, the world’s leading crowd sourced marketing platform for producing creative content. The Kids’ Healthy Mouths contest called on Zooppa’s community of over 27,000 amateur and professional video makers to leverage the existing campaign strategy to create their own videos showing parents trying to give important advice in just two minutes. The contest winners capture the spirit of the original PSAs and feature a lighthearted look at parenting today.
Here’s the winning entry:
Here are some great ways to make dental health fun:
- Take the 2min2x Texting Program Challenge with your kids!
75% of kids forget to brush their teeth. Want to make sure your kids are in the healthy 25%? Join the free texting challenge and take part in a five-day family brushing challenge. You’ll get 2 texts per day for 5 days,and will also receive personalized tips and support. (http://2min2x.org/sms.asp) or text TOOTH to 97779 to join.
- Make brushing fun with the free Toothsavers App: http://2min2x.org/toothsavers/ The widely popular mobile app Toothsavers was updated with three new characters (Alice in Wonderland, Pinocchio, and Rabbit). Since its launch, more than 68,400 people have downloaded the app.
- Scholastic Partnership: Kids’ Healthy Mouths has partnered with Scholastic to continue to educate parents and teachers on the importance of brushing. Resources are available at Scholastic.com/HealthyTeeth for caregivers and Scholastic.com/2min2x for teachers where they can download lesson plans, activities, an oral health care book list, oral health care tips in English and Spanish, and a printable oral health poster.
Now, just like brushing is a win-win, are you ready to win a prize? Enter here for a chance!
Disclaimer: I, Jamie Tomkins, own and operate TigerStrypes Blog located at www.tigerstrypes.com. From time to time you’ll hear about my real life experiences with products and/or services from companies and individuals. Let it be known that I have no affiliation with these said companies, and have not received compensation for reviewing their service/product. The service/product was purchased by me with monetary means, points, or coupons. No portion of the product/service was given to me by the company or any agents of the company. The review that I give regarding the product/service is based off my own personal experience; I do not guarantee that your experience will be the same.