‘Say Ahh’ announced as World Oral Health Day 2018-2020 theme
FDI launched today a three-year campaign for World Oral Health Day (WOHD) under the theme ‘Say Ahh’ at the World Dental Congress in Madrid, Spain. Combined with different sub-themes each year, the 2018 WOHD campaign: ‘Say Ahh: Think Mouth, Think Health’ encourages people to make the connection between their oral health and their general health and well-being.
"Say Ahh is a phrase that is commonly used by dentists and doctors during check-ups. It invites people to open their mouths for examination and brings to life the notion of the mouth serving as a mirror to the body and reflecting overall health. We want people to understand the mouth and body connection because the more informed they are about the impact of oral health on their general health, the more likely they will be to engage in preventive oral care routines."
Edoardo Cavalle, WOHD Task Team Chair
The WOHD 2018 campaign aims to educate people that keeping a healthy mouth is crucial to keeping it functioning correctly and for maintaining overall health and quality of life. It highlights associations between certain oral diseases and noncommunicable diseases (such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease and some cancers), raises awareness of common risk factors, and promotes good oral hygiene habits.
Recognizing students’ efforts on WOHD
The WOHD campaign launch was also an opportunity to present the winners of the WOHD 2017 student awards with certificates of recognition for their outstanding celebration of WOHD. In collaboration with the International Association of Dental Students, activities were evaluated against each of the four award categories and this year’s winners were:
Best branded photo
The Valencian Association of Dental Students won the award and was represented by Tasnim Nakdali Kassab. On the main square, students mounted several information stands (each with individual health sciences themes, including dentistry), promoted oral health messages, gave free dental check-ups, and organized games for children.
Most Original Activity
The Sudanese Association of Dental Students won the award and was represented by Mahmoud Majzoub. In the lead up to WOHD, they organized training for dental students, visits to schools with games and awareness-raising activities, free dental check-ups, a marathon under the ‘Live Mouth Smart’ theme, and a party on 20 March.
Best Media Campaign
The Palestinian Association of Dental Students won the award and was represented by Lina Khozondar. They had information points set up for the public, free dental check-ups, students visiting schools and clinics, and major social media and media outreach to raise awareness in the lead up to WOHD.
Most Educational Activity
The Dental Students’ Scientific Association of Egypt won the award and was represented by Hosam Eldeen Tarek Abdel Mageed. Spanning several weeks, they organized multiple events across the country and reached over 10,000 participants through national oral health campaigns and visits to schools, nurseries, orphanages, children’s hospitals, universities, and shopping malls.
What does WOHD stand for?
Celebrated each year on 20 March, WOHD is the largest global awareness campaign on oral health. It was launched by FDI in 2007 and is the culmination of year-long activities dedicated to raising global awareness on the prevention and control of oral disease.
Each year, WOHD focuses on a specific theme and reaches out to the general public, oral health professionals and policymakers, who all have a role to play in helping reduce the burden of oral disease. It provides an opportunity for them to take action.