School oral health awareness programs play a pivotal role in prevention and control of oral diseases e.g. dental caries and periodontal diseases. For this reason, every year, several awareness programs are organized by the Department of Community & Preventive Dentistry – Bolan Medical College Quetta, under the direction of Prof. Dr. Mujeeb-ur-Rehman Baloch. These programs are aimed at Oral-health promotion and disease prevention in the community. The audience selected for these awareness sessions is primarily comprised of school children aged from 6 to 12 years and school teachers.
This April, three school awareness sessions were conducted in Quetta. The BDS students imparted knowledge on positive eating and preventive oral health habits through verbal presentations and tooth brushing and flossing demonstrations on models for maintaining good oral hygiene. The participants were also provided with free tooth brushes and oral hygiene maintenance charts. At the end of each session, students were asked questions and prizes were distributed to the students giving correct answers.
The BDS students, as a part of their curriculum, had designed prepared and displayed posters and models on oral health awareness, which were displayed in the lecture rooms and school auditoriums. In order to make the sessions interesting and attractive for the school children, the BDS students held tableaus and role-plays with a theme: “prevention is better than cure”.
The school teachers were also encouraged to include oral health as a part of the daily teaching activity and spread oral health awareness among the children. The facilitators, including Dr. Hammal Naseer Baloch, Dr. Ashfaq Khawaja Khail, Dr. Shoaib Aziz Kurd, Dr. Erum Sami and Dr. Mehwish Jaffrey, stressed upon school teachers to keep an eye on the oral health of students and discourage the use of gutka, paan, chalia, and saunf supari.