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01 February 2020
Children are leaving school unable to brush their teeth

New research finds that one in ten (10%) children leave primary school without essential life skills, like brushing their teeth.

The study, conducted by Tic Watches, involved 500 parents and revealed that this essential oral health skill is just one of a number of basic skills that thousands of primary school leavers lack as they head toward their teenage years.

Learning to brush our teeth should be one of the first life skills we learn and carry forward with us as we grow older. It is never too early to learn about the importance of good oral health.

By the age of 11, children should be able to brush their own teeth, twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste. The earlier they take an active role in maintaining good hygiene, the more likely they are to maintain these habits as they get older.

Having great oral health can provide a number of benefits throughout our lives, so ensuring children learn how to achieve it must be a priority.

Dr Nigel Carter, Chief Executive of the Oral Health Foundation, commented: “Parents and teachers have an important role to play in educating children from an early age on the importance of maintaining good oral health, but they need support.

“Scotland and Wales have had great success in educating youngsters through a designated oral health programme, but we are yet to see a similar initiative in England. The government must prioritise oral health education across the country.”

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