GNWT Launches “Speak the Tooth” Oral Health Campaign with Help from Fourteen NWT Kids

News Releases

Yellowknife — April 8, 2021

A new oral health campaign—Speak the Tooth—launched earlier this week with fourteen children from the Northwest Territories (NWT) sharing the truth about the critical need for lifelong oral health.

Poor oral health is a significant issue in the NWT, especially among children and youth. The Speak the Tooth Campaign will increase knowledge and help change behaviour related to oral health.

NWT children aged five to ten were selected to appear on social media, TV and radio ads, posters and other materials to deliver oral health messages in a non-judgmental way and inspire parents, caregivers and everyone in all communities to get involved in promoting good oral health. Posters and ‘tooth tip cards’ for all ages will be available in all 11 NWT official languages.

The Speak the Tooth Campaign is part of the three year GNWT 2018 Oral Health Action Plan’s multi-directional approach towards improving the NWT population’s oral health status. The Action Plan focuses on innovative oral health promotion; supporting the integration of oral health into primary health care; improving systemic supports; and providing sustainable, culturally safe services.

To see the video, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gvXyegitIyY.

Quote:

“It’s exciting to have children from all communities help ‘Speak the Tooth’ about oral health and share good oral health habits. We know the truth—oral health is critical for the well-being of babies, young people and adults throughout their lives.”

- Julie Green, Minister of Health and Social Services

Quick facts:

  • Untreated oral disease has been shown to:
    • contribute to poor nutrition uptake due to chewing difficulty affecting growth;
    • and lead to chronic pain which can affect sleep patterns, concentration and the ability to learn, and contributes to school absenteeism.
  • The Speak the Tooth Campaign aims to raise awareness of the importance of oral health and change key oral health behaviours, particularly in families.
  • It features children and adults from all over the NWT.

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Media Requests, please contact:

Damien Healy

Manager of Communications

Department of Health and Social Services

Government of the Northwest Territories

(867) 767-9052 ext. 49034

Damien_Healy@gov.nt.ca