April is National Oral Health Month
Although the mouth is part of the body, we often think of it as something separate. We often ignore bleeding or tender gums, while an irritation or pain elsewhere in the body would mean a trip to the doctor.
Poor oral health can affect a person’s quality of life. Oral pain, missing teeth or oral infections can influence the way a person speaks, eats and socializes. These oral health problems can reduce a person’s quality of life by affecting their physical, mental and social well-being.
The reality is that oral health problems could be a sign of something serious such as oral cancer. Every year approximately 3,200 Canadians are diagnosed with oral cancer and 1,050 deaths from oral cancer occur. This devastating disease has a low survival rate because it is often diagnosed very late. With early detection the survival rate of oral cancer can be greatly improved. This means going to your dentist for regular dental exams. Your dentist has the training and experience to detect oral cancer early.
Everything that happens in your mouth affects your whole body, which is why it is so important to visit your dentist regularly. Only your dentist has the training, skills and expertise to properly address all your oral health care needs. Regular dental exams help prevent small problems from getting worse.
As part of a healthy lifestyle and to help reduce the risk of oral disease, follow these 5 steps to good oral health.
Five steps to good oral health
Put a smile in your body. Follow these simple steps to good oral health and watch your overall health improve, too:
- See your dentist regularly
- Keep your mouth clean
- Eat a well-balanced diet
- Check your mouth regularly for signs of gum disease and oral cancer
- Avoid all tobacco products
Remember there is a connection between good oral health and overall health. April is National Oral Health MonthTM so talk to your dentist about the reasons why.
FREE DOWNLOADS AND EDUCATIONAL TOOLS:
Oral Health Activities for Children and Adults
Have fun while learning about oral health using these educational tools, including a dental quiz, a word-find game and activities designed for children.
Adult Educational Tools:
- Oral Health Quiz (PDF 201 KB)
- Oral Health Word-Find (PDF 51.1 KB)
- A Lasting Smile Starts With Great Oral Health Habits (PDF)
- All-Start Brusher Award (PDF)
Teaching Children 5-7
Quick tips for sharing BSBF materials with kids Ages 5-7
Teaching Children 8-9
Quick tips for sharing BSBF materials with kids Ages 8-9.
Teaching Children 10-12
Quick tips for sharing BSBF materials with kids Ages 10-12
Award your children for their healthy smiles with this printable certificate.
BSBF Family Pledge
Encourage healthy habits among your children with the BSBF Family Pledge.
BSBF Community Pledge
Share this promise to practice healthy habits with your local community organization.
Your Bright Smile
Build healthy oral care habits with these easy steps and toothbrushing tips.
- Your Child’s Bright Smile – Parent Take-home (for ages 3-5) ENGLISH
- A Bright, Healthy Smile – Parent Checklist (for ages 3-5) ENGLISH
- Connect the Dots (PDF 470 KB)
- Find Your Way (PDF 39 KB)
- Word Search(PDF 1.35 MB)
- Answers to Activities(PDF 355 KB)
- Disney – Make Brushing Amazing Activity Book (PDF)
- Activity Sheets (PDF)
- Defeat Monster Mouth Story (English PDF)
- Defeat Monster Mouth Coloring Page (English PDF)
- Complete the Monster Face (English PDF)
- Monster Connect the Dots (English PDF)
- Match the Shadows (English PDF)
- Jen Crossword Puzzle (English PDF)
- Monster Find the Differences (English PDF)
- Monster Unscramble the Words (English PDF)
- Monster Word Search (English PDF)
- Monster Board Game (English PDF)
- Defeat Monster Mouth Certificate (English PDF)