Health Promotion has been defined by the World Health Organisation 2005 Bangkok Charter for Health Promotion as, “the process of enabling people to increase control over their health and is determent, and thereby improving their health.” The early years setting I work at is geographically set in a community first area had has high levels of poverty and unemployment. I decided to promote tooth brushing with the children whilst working in partnership with the Designed to Smile Campaign. Through the use of story time and songs they were given the information to educate them on oral health and the correct way to brush their teeth.
In 1948 the World Health Organisation defined health as being, “a state of complete physical, mental and social well being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity” It is vital as an Early Years worker to have an understanding of health and related issues to effectively promote the holistic development of the children at the setting. At the nursery we understand that health can have both a negative and positive effect on a child’s development and know that we have a responsibility to the children to educate them in an age appropriate manner and to teach them health living skills.
IN 1998 Sir Donald Acheson published a report on health inequalities, this report highlighted the difference between the social classes and the state of their health It suggested that the poorer you were the worse your health was and vice versa.
The in equalities in children’s health are unacceptably large, and overwhelmingly affects out counties, societies, communities, families and children with the fewest resources to cope with it. Even in more affluent countries, the pooper members of society carry a disproportionate share of the disease burden
(The European Health Report 2005)
Inequalities in child dental health are well documented. The 2003 Children’s Dental Health Survey found that children attending primary schools in socially-deprived areas of the UK were reported to have experienced more tooth decay than children in schools in non-deprived areas. (Office of National Statistics, 2003 Children’s Dental Health Survey) In Wales, over 50 per cent of five year-olds have experienced tooth decay. Designed to smile suggests that there is a widening gap between the oral health of children for the least well off and the most well off families in Wales. Under the Eradicating Child Poverty in Wales Measuring Success strategy, the dental targets set are that by 2020, the dental health of five and twelve year-olds in the most deprived fifth of the population will improve.
Rates of tooth decay are far too high in Wales given that it is almost a preventable disease, We hope to extend the provision of preventative care and treatment to children in Wales so that we can reduce the number of children with poor dental health to the UK average level and then to even lower levels, .
Designed to Smile is being developed through the National Child Oral Health Improvement Programme as a national programme to improve the dental health of children in Wales. This is the first “super pilot” tooth brushing scheme in parts of Wales, building on the experience of the established Fissure Sealant programme.
Due to the successful implementation of this programme to date, Edwina Hart, Minister for Health and Social Services announced in October 2009 that the programme would be enhanced and expanded to cover the whole of Wales.
As a Health Promoting nursery we provide an environment where the physical and mental wellbeing, health and safety of staff and pupils are supported, in partnership with family, community and multi-external agencies. Policies, practices and structures are in place that will underpin and facilitate a sustainable health promotion programme. The whole nursery is involved in the process and it features work in three key areas: • the ethos and...