Target Specific Oral Health Promotion Programmes

Certain captive population groups are targeted for tailored oral health promotion programmes. These programmes are characterized by being age and setting specific. They have clear objectives and performance targets that measure either oral health gain or desirable behavioural changes.

"Brighter Smiles for the New Generation" Programme

"Brighter Smiles for the New Generation" Programme is targeted at children aged under 6 studying in the local kindergartens and nurseries. The Programme aims to help children establish good toothbrushing and smart diet habits for the prevention of dental diseases. The objectives are i) to increase the percentage of children brushing their teeth with children's toothpaste twice daily , ii) to increase the percentage of parents providing supplementary toothbrushing for their children every evening and iii) to increase the percentage of children snacking no more than once between meals. Past programme evaluations demonstrated significant increase in objectives i) and ii).

OHEU will provide the participating schools with educational materials which includes a Teacher's Manual for the teacher, a Student Oral Care Record Book, a cartoon DVD and an age-appropriated on-line picture book for each child. There are also posters for the schools to promote the Programme. With these materials, the schools will designate a 12-week period to conduct a school-wide toothbrushing activity. The children are encouraged to watch the cartoon story and follow the instructions in the DVD to participate in the activity. As for their parents, they have to check the children's toothbrushing, provide them with supplementary toothbrushing, supervise their snacking habit at home, and sign off in the handbook everyday. Should the children's performance meet the requirement, they will be awarded with relevant certificates accordingly. There are three types of awards: Self Care Award for the child's independent effort, Love Kids Award for the parent's supplementary toothbrushing effort and the Smart Diet Award for the child's self-discipline on snacks. These awards positively reinforce the children's good behaviour. Through collaboration with the Hong Kong Dental Association, more awards are introduced as an incentive to sustain the children's oral care habits that have been developed over the 12-week activity period.

Performance of the Programme depends on the co-operation of the teachers and the degree of participation of the children and the parents. All through the years, we have consistently over 600 schools with around 120,000 children participating every year. Positive feedback from parents appraising that the Programme has been successful in helping children establish a good toothbrushing habit is often received.

“Brighter Smiles for the New Generation Programme” Facebook

The Bright Smiles Campus Programme

The Bright Smiles Campus Programme is a school-based oral health promotion programme for primary school students. It is newly launched in 2009-10. It aims to empower the students to improve the cleanliness of their teeth. Its objective is to increase the percentage of children with cleaner teeth, i.e. less tooth surfaces with presence of dental plaque.

The Programme is implemented through the participating schools. The schools nominate senior grade students (P.4-6) to be trained as Bright Smiles Ambassadors. A half-day leadership training workshop is given to equip the Ambassadors with presentation skill and basic oral care techniques. These Ambassadors will be commissioned to promote the I WILL BRUSH Activity to the P.1 to P.3 students in school to encourage them to brush their teeth thoroughly clean on their own initiative. They inspect the Toothbrushing Record of the schoolmates every week, and paste the award stickers onto the cover of the Student Handbook of those who have completed all the required toothbrushing items of the week. At the end of the activity period, teachers will collect all the handbooks and issue the award certificates according to the students' accomplishments. In addition, the participating schools could nominate parents or teachers to join a prior oral care training session, so that they will be equipped to assist in teaching the teeth cleaning techniques to the Bright Smiles Ambassadors during their workshop. Additionally, the participating school organises the Ambassadors to propose, implement and report on an oral health promotion activity in school.

The Bright Smiles Campus programme provides an interactive caring platform in the school, for the senior students to build kind relationships with the juniors. As a result, the school will effectively be filled of Bright Smiles and Loving Hearts.

The Bright Smiles Ambassadors will improve their oral care skills and communication skills with peers. While motivated by warmth and love, the junior students will care to clean their teeth well so as to improve their oral health.

For more information about "Bright Smiles Campus Programme", please browse the desktop version.

Teens Teeth Programme

"Teens Teeth Programme" is a school-based oral health promotion programme which adopts a peer-led approach in promoting oral health to the S1 students since 2005. The objectives of the Programme are: (1) to reduce gum bleeding; and (2) to promote flossing habit among S1 students. The evaluation results from school years 2005-2006 and 2011-12 showed that both the oral health condition and oral health knowledge of the S1 students could improve after the Programme.

To tie in with the current New Senior Secondary Academic Structure and school culture, a two-year programme "TEENS Teeth Award Scheme" has been launched under "Teens Teeth Programme" since 2015. The aim of the "TEENS Teeth Award Scheme" is to promote the adoption of desirable oral care habits among secondary school students utilizing the peer-led approach, thereby promoting their oral health. This programme puts emphasis on enriching the learning experience of the peer leaders and their fellow schoolmates, as well as to create a supportive environment for oral health promotion via the formation of a "Peer Leader Team" in school. In addition, this programme incorporates awards for different levels of accomplishment which motivate the peer leaders to realize their mission in oral health promotion.

In "Teens Teeth Award Scheme", eight to ten S4 students from each intervention school will be trained as peer leaders. The peer leaders will undergo a series of leadership training and workshops on oral care skills in summer. They will also learn to pass on their skills to their fellow schoolmates as well as to train their schoolmates to become coaches, thereby uniting a group of enthusiastic students to form a "Peer Leader Team". This team will promote good oral care habits to the S1 students and, improve their oral health so as to enhance their self-image. Through these practices, the "Peer Leader Team" will grow and become committed leaders in schools and community.

In addition, through activities organized with the Oral Health Education Unit, the "Peer Leader Team" will be given a chance to explore dentally- related career. Such experience can broaden the knowledge and horizon of the students, help them identify their inclination which are of great benefit to their future. This programme also includes a number of different awards, which aim to encourage student's participation and their inputs through inter-school competitions, as well as to commend the schools for their unceasing support.

Dandelion Oral Care Action

The Dandelion Oral Care Action is an oral health promotion programme for the mild and moderate intellectual disabled children in the special schools. It is a school programme based on the systematic toothbrushing and flossing techniques developed in collaboration with a special school for the moderate intellectual disabled children in 2004-05 academic year.

The systematic toothbrushing technique is easy for the special children to learn and easy for the teachers to teach. The entire toothbrushing process is broken down into many small and achievable steps, which are grouped into 5 stages with 36 groups of teeth to brush. For dental flossing, the two approximal surfaces in the same interdental space is considered as one group. The children learn the technique by Stages and by groups. They are required to be proficient with what they have already learned before they progress to the next group or stage. They must acquire the toothbrushing skill fully before they learn the flossing technique. Both techniques are taught to and learned by all the teachers, parents and children in the school to create a supporting environment for the children to master the skill.

The Dandelion Programme objectives are defined with short term and long term goals. It is targeted to reduce the visible plaque or the bacterial film accumulated on the children's teeth in the short term of one to two years. The long term goal is for the child who has been through the entire schooling of 12 years. He is expected to be able to brush and floss his own teeth competently and independently by the time he leaves school.

The Programme is implemented in a train-the-trainer approach. The OHEU trains the school nurse and at least one teacher from each school to be the Oral Health Trainers (OHT). The OHTs learn some basic oral care knowledge, and the two oral care techniques through practicing on the manikin first, then on the children until they have fully mastered the skills. They, in turn, train all the teachers in the school in the same manner. They also conduct workshops to train the parents, who are expected to brush twice a day and floss once daily for their children at home using the same techniques.

The Programme was successfully launched and adopted in all special schools with moderate, mild/moderate and mild intellectual disabled children in 2005-2010. Oral Health Trainers have been trained. The oral care skill has become part of the self-care curriculum of the schools. The parents who participated on voluntary basis have found their toothbrushing and flossing skills for their children improved. Currently, 28 schools in Hong Kong subscribe the Dandelion Programme. Systematic evaluation for the achievement of objectives has begun in 2008-09. Various evaluation parameters will be measured annually or bi-annually over the next 12 years.

For more information about "Dandelion Oral Care Action", please browse the desktop version.

Love Teeth Campaigns

Since 2003, the Oral Health Education Unit has been annually implementing the Love Teeth Campaigns.. The Campaigns, with a specific theme each year, promote oral health to the Hong Kong population via mass media, including television, radio, MTR stations and newspapers. Moreover, we also organize joint oral health promotion programmes with the dental profession and community organizations.

Surveys on the effectiveness of the Love Teeth Campaigns show that there has been a steady increase in the number of people taking up flossing, regular dental check-up and professional teeth cleaning habits over the years. The community's knowledge and awareness of periodontal disease were also raised.

For more information about "Love Teeth Campaigns", please browse the desktop version.

"Love Teeth Campaigns" Facebook

Last revision date: 10 December 2015