Every year provides us with opportunities to raise awareness of oral health and how to take positive action. Across the national campaigns, the messages are around being informed and about empowering people to make changes. The campaigns we support and promote on a local level are:
National Smile Month runs mid May to mid June each year. People can engage in the campaign in a variety of ways and by accessing (or making their own) resources (see the useful links - National Smile Month). In recent years the ‘smiley’ has been adopted and embraced by the nation! The Oral Health Improvement team engages in local events, media and distributes information to maximise on the National Smile Month opportunities.
Mouth Cancer Action Month runs for the whole month of November. The campaign raises awareness of the disease, its prevalence, the importance of checking our own mouth regularly and of going to the dentist. The Oral Health Improvement team promotes these messages and disseminates the campaign materials widely during the month. The team is keen to incorporate the Bite Back campaign in the workplace; this provides information on self-check assessments to identify the early stages of mouth cancer.
The Oxfordshire Oral Health Improvement team recently visited the Oxfordshire Fire service HQ screening on 7 November 2018. 43 people were screened using the CDS mobile unit. The day was promoted on the OCC website, OCC Facebook, Fire Service Facebook and the Oxford Mail on 5 November.
Click the link for more information Mini Plant in Oxford received free Mouth Cancer Check-Ups
Stoptober is a national campaign headed by Public Health England which encourages people across the country to stop smoking together on 1 October for 28 days (and beyond). Evidence shows that if a smoker can quit for 28 days they are five times more likely to stay smokefree. Motivation and support are provided before, during and for a period of time after the campaign month.
No Smoking Day is a campaign run by the British Heart Foundation. For one day in March each year smokers are offered help to quit by creating a supportive environment and by highlighting the many sources of help and support available.
The impact of smoking on oral health is significant and the Oral Health Improvement team promotes these popular campaigns, working in partnership with local stop smoking teams.
The team is keen to support other organisations in delivering oral health messages and develop tooth-friendly guidelines.
Oxfordshire is a vibrant county with many events organised by statutory services and the voluntary sector; these are ideal opportunities to incorporate oral health information.
To date the team has enjoyed (literally) working in a variety of fields with the Oxfordshire Play Association Play Days, healthy Hospitals days across all four OUH hospitals, regular pop-ups with the Hereforhealth team OUH, supporting the Sugar Smart Oxford campaign, promoting better oral health at Unipart House, Age UK Fairs, Macmillian health and well being event, Health Watch information events, Health and well being days at Dalton and Vauxhall barracks and local ALD events.
More events are in the planning stage; please contact us if you think we can support your event.
More information is available on all of the above by using our useful links.