April 7th, 2011 – From Dental Health Magazine
Currently, in Canada there are living approximately 4.4 million people with certain disabilities.
They would need more attention, because they do not receive proper dental care. In some cases, they have to wait even over a year to get the proper treatment.
According to Sandy Lawlor who is a board member of the Canadian Dental Hygienists Association,people with disabilities are representing that stratum of the society that has to live with a poor oral health.
There are people who have to live with a disability which does not allow a good hand function, so they cannot clean their teeth. Continuing, she states that in order for these people to have a god gum and teeth health, they should have access to visit the dentist on a regular basis.
They would need especially dental services such as removing the plaque and scaling of the teeth, for a much better oral health, and to prevent other complications.
The mission statement of the organization is to raise awareness of the general public, institutions and oral health practitioners, that people with disabilities need special attention and special care as to their oral health.The non profit organization OHTH (Oral Health, Total Health) has been founded in 2008 by Alison Sigal, a student of dentistry from the University of Toronto.
The founder further states that if every dentistry student would become involved and offer proper dental treatment for at least one patient on a yearly basis, the problem of the waiting lists would be almost solved.
She makes a truly huge effort in raising awareness both in the general public and the dental practitioners, since many of them refer their patients with disabilities to the Mount Sinai clinic only because they are unfamiliar with treating patients who have a certain disability.
Equal and universal access to proper oral health is very important for people with disabilities, and it is truly up to each oral health practitioner to make a huge difference in the lives of these people, she continues.