Faculty of Dentistry UGM and Pepsodent give a free dental service from 12-14 October in the Prof. Soedomo Dental and Oral Hospital at UGM. The community service programme is to celebrate the National Dental Health Month. It involves as many as 130 specialists and 200 students while as many as 200 primary school students and 120 street vendors and scavengers get their free services.
Dean of Faculty of Dentistry UGM, Dr. drg. Ahmad Syaifi, SU, Sp.Perio (K)., said the event was to promote routine dental checks for families. “We want to ask people to have dental and mouth regular checks, not just waiting for a dental problem to occur to visit the dentist,” said Syaifi to journalists on Thursday (13/10).
According to Syaifi, preventing a disease in the dents and mouth was more important than treating a dental problem. Syaifi added dental cavities were due to lack of care and untimely brushing of the teeth, “Though 90 percent of Indonesian people already brush their teeth, but only 2.3 percent brush the teeth at the right time and routinely,” he said.
The government programme to target Indonesia free from dental caries in 2030 needs to be supported by educating the people.
Representatives from Unilever Foundation, drg. Ratu Mirah Afifah, said the prevalence of dental cavities in Indonesia was 4.6 percent and 25.9 percent have mouth problems. Of this figure, only 8.1 percent go to dentists.
The free dental services at Soedomo Hospital, said Vice-Dean of Research, Community Service, and Cooperation of the Faculty, drg. Triana Wahyu Utami, MDSc., Ph.D., target as many as 225 primary school students from 15 schools, 120 street vendors and scavengers. “We want to reach all elements of community for this event. We hope by next year we could reach more people,” she said.