1 in 2 S'poreans neglect going to dentist

SINGAPORE - A regional survey found that 48 per cent of Singaporeans suffer from dentine hypersensitivity, significantly higher than the global average of 30 per cent.

In addition, only 26 per cent of Singaporeans visit the dentist twice yearly, and 46 per cent last visited the dentist over a year ago.

Conducted by Sensodyne, the study estimated that dentine hypersensitivity in Singapore is continuing to climb by 5 per cent annually.

The survey showed dentine hypersensitivity is generally on the rise in Asia, with the Philippines having incidence rates of 82 per cent, and Taiwan 50 per cent.

In response to this, The Singapore Dental Association (SDA) is rolling out plans on preventive education to raise awareness of tooth sensitivity in Singapore and the importance of attending to the condition, which affects both young and old.

More than 800 dentists have pledged to educate patients and raise public awareness on dentine hypersensitivity, namely how it can lead to poor oral health and reduce the quality of life.

Dr Phillip Goh, President of the SDA, said: "Dentine hypersensitivity may be one of the most misunderstood dental problems, and the fight against dentine hypersensitivity really starts with self-motivation through good oral health awareness and applying the correct techniques, while not neglecting to seek the advice of the dental professionals."

Prof Patrick Tseng, Chief Dental Officer at the Ministry of Health (MOH), reminded the public to go for regular dental examination and to be proactive in learning more about oral health and general health.

A team of dentists and hygienists will be conducting free dental screenings at the Vivocity Level 1 Atrium on 3 and 4 March as part of the dentine hypersensitivity public education campaign.