School children get teeth into dental scheme

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Brighouse schools have been getting their teeth into a dental hygiene programme run by Leeds Beckett University.

A scheme run by South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust which helps young children to maintain good dental hygiene has been commended following a research project by Leeds Beckett University.

The toothbrushing in schools programme is delivered by the trust’s oral health improvement team and helps children aged three to five in schools learn how to brush their teeth, reducing the risk of tooth decay and cavities.

The team also delivers training to staff as part of the programme and gives the groups the necessary toothbrushes and toothpaste enabling everyone to take part.

Thirty-three schools and children’s centres took part in the programme across Calderdale .

Dr James Woodall, co-director of the Centre for Health Promotion Research at Leeds Beckett, said: “Our evaluation of the scheme suggests that integrating toothbrushing within the school day is feasible and has the potential to contribute to reducing health inequalities across the region.”

Kath Halstead, health improvement specialist at the trust, said: “The toothbrushing in schools programme has been a huge success in terms of helping children to learn a life skill and improving their dental health.”

For more information about the scheme, visit www.southwestyorkshire.nhs.uk.