On April 18, renowned oral health expert Professor Angus Walls, a member of the British Dental Association came to the Philippines for a series of talk on the “Latest Trends in Removable Dentures” and on the “Implication of Oral Health and Nutrition on Systemic Health in the Elderly” held at the Hotel H2O Pacific Ballroom.
The event is timely in light of studies showing that an estimated 21 million Filipino adults are denture wearers. This makes the Philippines a country with one of the highest denture incidences among emerging markets.
Having a healthy set of teeth is an essential aspect of daily life. However, oral health is being taken for granted among many Filipinos, with the high incidence of wearing dentures even among the non-elderly just one more argument for the need to engage in an information campaign for oral health care in the Philippines.
According to Prof. Walls, “Improving the awareness of oral health may result in significant benefits for a relatively modest investment in health care resources.”
Supporting the advocacy of oral health care specifically through Gerodontology - the study of the teeth and dental problems in the aged, and among those wearing dentures,
Walls is currently a professor of Restorative Dentistry in School of Dental Sciences and Director of the Research School of Dental Sciences in Newcastle University in England. He is concurrently vice dean of the Faculty of Dental Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons of England.
Prof. Walls believes Gerodontology is essential in the practice of dentistry, saying that “The oral health needs of the elderly are changing. This will impact both the individuals themselves and those who will care for the older persons. The increased numbers of older people retaining their natural teeth will present challenges to the dental profession that will require careful and focused management strategies if they are to be successfully addressed.”