LONDON, England (Reuters) – Dentists in London are recommending dental hygiene for people suffering from oral cancer and those suffering from gum disease, as the city continues to grapple with the rise of the pandemic.
But the advice to avoid toothpastes and mouthwash was drawn from a survey of 3,000 dentists across London by London Dental Group, a dental care provider.
The survey found that more than a third of London dentists said they had received complaints from patients complaining of gum disease or toothpastitis in the past year, according to a Reuters analysis of data provided by London Dentists Association.
The results were based on responses from 8,000 London dentistry graduates, who were asked about their dental hygiene habits.
In the survey, nearly half of the dentists surveyed said they would consider recommending toothpaste, brushing and flossing, compared with 35 percent of the general public.
Dr. James Smith, who is also the head of the London Donticare programme, said there was a growing concern about the spread of oral cancers, especially in young people.
He said the survey suggested a significant number of dentists were not taking the recommended measures.
“We have a very high rate of cavities in the UK and our dentists have been advised to be more diligent and to not use products that may be harmful to their patients,” he said.
London Dentists’ Association said that despite the survey’s findings, its members were aware of many of the dental hygiene advice being issued to dentists.
“It is very important that we are aware of these issues, and we do not wish to take a side,” said Dr. Peter Bower, chairman of the association.
The association has launched a campaign to raise awareness of the problem and to promote the use of mouthwash and flannel when brushing teeth.
The campaign, dubbed Toothpaste Is Not a Cleaner, will run on television and social media for three weeks starting in April.
It will also be shown on the BBC News channel.
In addition to the survey results, the association also released a new survey that it said showed that over the past six months, a significant proportion of London dental patients were using dental floss, mouthwash or toothpaste.