Pepsodent Toothpaste, in partnership with the Nigerian Dental Association, has launched an oral health awareness campaign in various primary schools across the country.
The Pepsodent Oral Health Schools’ programme is a 21 days behavioral change campaign aimed at preventing and treating the causes of ill oral health that affect children’s ability to learn, while creating a safe and supportive school environment that promotes healthy behavioral change.
With the support of the Nigerian Dental Association, the Universal Basic Education Board and the Federal Ministry of Health, the programme is being rolled out in about four thousand (4,000) primary schools nationwide.
Speaking at the launch of the Program at Central Primary School, Ikeja, Lagos, Mr David Okeme, Brand Building Director, said that as a business, Unilever believes that kids can change the world by adopting healthy oral habits and they can convince their parents to do same.
He said that Super Dentists Cartoon Characters: Doctor Dee Dee, Star Smile, Mighty Bite and Bristle have been unveiled to engage kids to adopt the habit of brushing twice daily (morning and night) at home.
He enjoined the public to brush their teeth twice a day with an advanced toothpaste, such as Pepsodent Triple Protection 123 to protect against cavities, stains and bad breath; floss daily to remove plaque from between the teeth, avoid snacking on sweet or acidic foods and drinks that can cause cavities and wear away tooth enamel and ensure to see the dentist for regular check-ups as well as ask for advice on the best oral hygiene routine.
Also speaking, Dr. Bode Ijarogbe, President Nigerian Dental Association, said children are more vulnerable to dental cavities because they consume more of sweetened food
“Children are the ones that have flair for sugar-based products like sweets, cakes, chewing gum, candies, chocolates and even some of the syrups that are taken as medicine. But in this case, we refer to fermentable sugar, that is, sugar that can be acted upon by the bacterial in the mouth.
“Normally, everyone has bacterial in the mouth and other parts of the body. But as regards formation of cavity, the bacterial in the mouth only becomes very dangerous in the presence of fermentable sugar-based diet. The sugar acts as diet for the bacterial and produces a by-product of dilute acid which eventually results in cavity formation, resulting in holes which gradually becomes larger and eventually into tooth ache.
“And if this is not quickly addressed, it results to severe pain which could lead to loss of manpower at work for adults and school absenteeism for the child. The kids are the major target in this programme because they have more cravings for sweet foods. And when these children adopt the habit of a healthy oral lifestyle, they can then spread the message to their parents.
Dr. Ijarogbe advised the public to brush twice daily to reduce the incidence of cavities.
“We often advise that when people brush, they should brush twice daily with fluoridated toothpaste. NDA wants to be sure that when people brush, they brush with fluoridated toothpaste. As such, we have subjected Pepsodent toothpaste to test before we endorsed it. And we are rest assured that it contains fluoride. Flouride is an active ingredient in toothpaste that helps to prevent tooth decay,” he said.
Commenting on the value proposition of Pepsodent toothpaste, Bunmi Adeniba, Category Manager, Oral Care, Unilever Nigeria, said that Pepsodent Tripple Protection toothpaste is one big breakthrough formulation that gives three benefits that one would ordinarily have gotten in three different toothpastes.
“Pepsodent gives you three benefits in one brush. The unique formulation of Pepsodent Triple Protection guarantees protection against cavities, stains and bad breath and these are the most prevalent oral care needs in most homes,” she said.
Also speaking, Mrs Ukandu Kate, Central Primary School, Ikeja, Lagos, said that her pupils have improved on their oral hygiene unlike the past where many of them rarely brush their teeth.
“The on-going 21-day programme influences the kids to brush daily and we have noticed that a lot of them go further to brush at least twice daily with Pepsodent Toothpaste given to them.”