Extracts and a comment from me below. Full text: https://www.who.int/news/item/18-11-2022-who-highlights-oral-health-negl...
WHO highlights oral health neglect affecting nearly half of the world’s population
18 November 2022 News release Geneva Reading time: 3 min (833 words)
A new Global Oral Health Status Report published today by the World Health Organization (WHO) provides the first-ever comprehensive picture of oral disease burden with data profiles for 194 countries, giving unique insights into key areas and markers of oral health that are relevant for decision-makers.
The report shows that almost half of the world’s population (45% or 3.5 billion people) suffer from oral diseases, with 3 out of every 4 affected people living in low- and middle-income countries. Global cases of oral diseases have increased by 1 billion over the last 30 years—a clear indication that many people do not have access to prevention and treatment of oral diseases.
“Oral health has long been neglected in global health, but many oral diseases can be prevented and treated with the cost-effective measures outlined in this report,” said WHO Director-General, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. “WHO is committed to providing guidance and support to countries so that all people, wherever they live and whatever their income, have the knowledge and tools needed to look after their teeth and mouths, and to access services for prevention and care when they need them.”
The most common oral diseases are dental caries (tooth decay), severe gum disease, tooth loss and oral cancers. Untreated dental caries is the single most common condition globally, affecting an estimated 2.5 billion people. Severe gum disease ̶ a major cause of total tooth loss ̶ is estimated to affect 1 billion people worldwide. About 380 000 new cases of oral cancers are diagnosed every year.
The report underscores the glaring inequalities in access to oral health services, with a huge burden of oral diseases and conditions affecting the most vulnerable and disadvantaged populations...
The report showcases many promising opportunities to improve the state of global oral health...
COMMENT (NPW): To the above we might add support for providers of oral health services (including access to reliable, relevant information) and public health education. In 2019 WHO passed a Resolution that 'recommends a shift from the traditional curative approach towards a preventive approach that includes promotion of oral health within the family, schools and workplaces, and includes timely, comprehensive and inclusive care within the primary health-care system'. https://apps.who.int/gb/ebwha/pdf_files/WHA74/A74_R5-en.pdf