|Reports & Publications - Annual Report 2004
Dental Workshops Provided For Ontario Works Clients
Submitted by Robin Cleary, RDH, Registered Dental Hygienist
The Leeds, Grenville & Lanark District Health Unit has been offering several health promotion workshops to Ontario Works clients in Lanark County for the past several years. Tobacco, nutrition and dental health presentations have been provided in co-ordination with the Ontario Works workshop supervisor.
The dental workshop was designed and is delivered by a Public Health Registered Dental Hygienist in hopes of achieving several goals. A prime objective is to increase awareness regarding the importance of maintaining good oral health and the demonstration of basic dental skills. The basis of the session is to stress the importance of “clean teeth and fresh breath”, in hopes of improving oral health and to assist clients in gaining employment.
Many topics are discussed during the 2-hour presentation, and the session is very informal. Another objective of these workshops is help clients make the link between good oral health and good overall health. Oral care, dental nutrition, gum disease and tobacco products are discussed. Preventive dental health topics include the demonstration of proper brushing and flossing techniques, dental rinses and professional dental visits. Making healthy food choices for overall health and dental health is a topic that clients enjoy. The use of tobacco products and possible oral health effects, as well as signs and symptoms or oral health concerns related to the use of tobacco products, is also covered. As well, the workshop helps to educate clients on the signs and symptoms of gum disease and gum disease prevention.
The workshops are very interactive and many questions are generated from the clients on topics such as bleaching, oral piercing, fluorides, dentures, and commercial dental products. The workshops have been very well received in the 3 communities in which they have been delivered, Perth, Carleton Place and Smiths Falls. Clients are made aware of the Dental Program at the Health Unit and are encouraged to seek out dental information from the Registered Dental Hygienists and Certified Dental Assistants.
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