Posted: Saturday, October 25, 2014. 3:02 pm CST.
Saturday, October 25, 2014. AARON HUMES Reporting: Dental Health Week was held this week under the theme, “Belize Big Up Your Smile, It Reflects Your Style.” Activities were held countrywide to emphasize the importance of dental health, including free teeth cleaning for teachers.
On Friday in Belize City the community were invited to a dental health fair featuring participation from the Dental Health Department and other organizations who have an interest in maintaining healthy teeth, and there was even a special appearance from Belize’s own Tooth Fairy.
But, some Belizeans still carry a childhood fear of unendurable pain at the end of a tooth drill which prevents them from seeing the dentist regularly.
Senior Dental Surgeon Dr. Rafael Samos says he recommends visits twice per year, not just when one is in pain.
Those measures include brushing your teeth several times a day, using dental floss and avoiding excessive sweets and sugars.
According to the Ministry of Health, the Dental Department also participated earlier this year in a survey along with the Public Health Inspectorate and the Water Quality Laboratory of Central Health Region to determine the fluoride content of drinking water.
The last fluoride survey in drinking water was done in 1999 and since then there have been changes in drinking water sources countrywide, with more than half of Belizeans now using purified water as opposed to BWS standard or even rain water or underground wells.
But there’s really no difference, as explained by Water Analyst for the Ministry of Health Anthony Flowers who told us that more than four in every five water samples tested for less than the WHO limit at 0.009 milligrams/liter.
The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends a limit of 0.7 milligrams/liter of fluoride, with a maximum limit of 1.5 milligrams.
The highest concentration was found in two wells in the San Jose/San Pablo area of Orange Walk, occurring naturally.
Flouride strengthens tooth enamel to prevent cavities from forming and some countries actually introduce it to their water supplies.
Belize has no plans, according to Flowers, to move in that direction yet.
Participating private companies at the fair included Santiago Castillo Limited, Grace Kennedy (Belize) Limited and James Brodie and Company Limited.
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