TeethFirst’s mission – Making Oral Hygiene as Accessible as Hand Hygiene
Caries (tooth decay) is ubiquitous. In children, it is 4 to 5 times more prevalent than asthma and by age 19, more than 2/3 of children have signs of the disease in their mouth. What we see in dental offices, Public Health Facilities, the Hospital, the schools, and at the People’s Health Clinic confirms that Park City (Utah) is no exception. At TeethFirst, we believe that Making Oral Hygiene as Accessible as Hand Hygiene will help communities improve their oral health. Offering supervised flossing and brushing programs in elementary school classrooms is a logical place to start. Anyone in the hospitality industry can also be a major contributor to this movement with simples shifts. Park City is the place where it begins.
The National Institute of Health defines caries as “a transmissible bacterial infection…” This disease is preventable; yet, the statistics as mentioned above are appalling. The costs of treating this preventable disease add up to multi $Billions annually.
An Innovation Company
TeethFirst is emerging as a company advancing innovation for a cause: reducing the burden of dental disease. TeethFirst is also an explorer engaged in the complex discovery of how community can contribute to oral health as part of its fabric of caring. TeethFirst is a merchant wishing to commercialize an idea worth sharing. And finally, TeethFirst is also an architect in enabling others to build and develop new systems of oral health care.
A Call For A Shift In Priorities
True prevention is about blocking the factors that cause the disease. We need to confront Streptococcus Mutans‘ relentless drive to survive and adapt with toothbrush and floss. Arm yourself with toothbrush and floss and make sure you clean your mouth after each meal. Our current preventive practices are not effective enough. TeethFirst calls for a shift in priorities from the costly pursuit of treatment to prevention. Join the TeethFirst Revolution.
Think About It
Do you wash your soiled dishes only every other meal? Do you clean only 60% of your dirty silverware? What would your kitchen smell like if you if you treated your dishes and silverware the way you treat your teeth? You put gooey, mushy, sticky foods in your mouth mixed in with sugary low pH liquids several times per day, wait until bedtime to brush and forget to floss… right? Ever wondered why you wake up with jungle breath in the morning?
Call To Action
TeethFirst invites people to get together and see what they can do in their community to make oral health more visible and oral hygiene more accessible. Most of us consume at least one meal a day away from home. What are we willing to say YES to together to make sure that the mess we create in our mouths with each meal gets cleaned effectively and in a timely fashion?
TeethFirst’s Big Idea to address this issue is to “Make Oral Hygiene as Accessible as Hand Hygiene”. In other words we believe that if we make it not only possible but really easy for people to floss and brush their teeth after meals away from home, we will change the statistics on caries and contribute to improve oral health in our community. We expect to be offered the possibility of washing our hands after going to the toilet because we know that this is an essential component of health. Why should this simple public health essential courtesy not be extended to oral health? Teeth are Unique engineering marvels.
The best place to initiate this shift is in schools.
Following Marielle Pariseau’s (CEO) vision and based on quality research showing that supervised tooth brushing leads to a significant decrease in caries for children participating in such programs, TeethFirst launched an after lunch flossing & brushing Pilot Project March 2nd 2015. By June 2nd 2015 this program had eliminated one or more caries risk factors for many of the participating children.
All children deserve this kind of oral health support.
To fulfill its mission, TeethFirst plans to grow the program with the children and to expand to eventually include all children attending school in the Park City District.