“Oral health is integral to overall health of a person and will contribute to the all-round development of the nation.” This was stated by Shri Faggan Singh Kulaste, Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare. He was speaking at a function to mark the ‘World Oral Health Day’, here today. Shri C K Mishra, Secretary (Health and Family Welfare) and Dr Jagdish Prasad, Director General of Health Services and other senior officers of the Ministry were also present at the event. Shri Faggan Singh Kulaste also launched the Information, Education and Communication (IEC) material along with the National Dental and Oral Health Information IVR portal including a toll free number (1XXX-XX-2032) for addressing oral health queries. Speaking at the function, Shri Faggan Singh stated that India has taken huge strides in the healthcare sector by initiating new programmes to improve the health outcome of the country and it is now amongst those nations that have dedicated programme on oral health.
Faggan Singh further added that raising awareness about dental health is a need of the hour and these information initiatives will go a long way in encouraging people to adopt positive and healthy habits, Shri Faggan Singh said. Speaking on the occasion, Shri C K Mishra , Secretary (H&FW) stated that oral diseases are becoming the leading health problems and attributed mainly to rapidly changing lifestyles, wide-spread use of tobacco and increased consumption of alcohol. Due to prevalence and incidence, oral diseases pose a major threat to public health. The Secretary (Health) said that the Ministry is integrating the oral health programme with other programmes so that adequate steps can be taken to mitigate and minimise the conditions arising from poor health. Shri C K Mishra stressed on the need for raising awareness about oral health. “We need to combine preventive measures with emphasis on education to create oral health awareness among the various segment of the population,” Shri Mishra said. Also present at the function were Shri Manoj Jhalani, Joint Secretary, Lav Agarwal, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, and senior officers of the Ministry and All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Delhi.