Whole Mouth Health Statement
Maintaining a healthy microbiome plays a fundamental role in maintaining a healthy mouth and a healthy body. The microbiome exists on every surface of the oral cavity. When the microbiome becomes imbalanced, through actions, behaviours and habits such as sub-optimal oral hygiene, smoking or dehydration, this imbalance can lead to oral diseases, such as periodontal disease and caries, and is associated with systemic conditions such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and pneumonia.
Helping patients understand the importance of maintaining a healthy microbiome and a healthy mouth, and the changes needed to achieve this, is, therefore, an essential role for oral health professionals (AND non-oral health professionals).
The mouth and its microbiome are highly variable both between and within individuals, so health messages need to be as individual as the patients are. By co-designing oral health literacy strategies, oral health and non-oral health professionals can work with patients and the public to create long lasting strategies to improve oral health and achieve a healthier life.