Periodontal (gum) disease including gingivitis (inflammation of the gums) and periodontitis (inflammation of the tissue around the teeth, often causing shrinkage of the gums and loosening of the teeth), is among humanity’s most common diseases affecting up to 50% of the adult population worldwide. Periodontal health is essential to general health and key to securing a person’s quality of life and well-being through their life course.
Gum health is easily overlooked during daily oral health routines. Periodontal disease can cause tooth loss (edentulism) and is closely associated with other diseases including diabetes and cardiovascular disease, with which it shares common risk factors (e.g. unhealthy diet, tobacco and smoking).
Periodontal disease has a significant socio-economic impact on governments and populations worldwide, yet it remains a low priority and treatment is still unavailable in many countries.
The Global Periodontal Health Project (GPHP) was launched in October 2015 to reduce the burden of periodontal disease by raising awareness of its impact and engaging the public, oral health and other health professionals, educators, and policymakers in promoting periodontal health.
Roadmap to achieving periodontal health
Working with FDI National Dental Associations, the Global Periodontal Health Project will make periodontal health a priority issue at the national level by:
Increasing global awareness
Disseminating promotional tools
Actively engaging with local populations
The project engages directly with Chief Dental Officers and Ministers of Health to implement the United Nations Political Declaration on noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), which recognizes the burden caused by oral disease in all FDI member countries.
GPHP responds to the urgent need for action to increase prevention efforts and reduce the occurrence of periodontal diseases.