KUALA LUMPUR, June 10 2010 (Bernama) -- Malaysians continue to give less importance to oral health than general health, Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, wife of the prime minister, said Thursday.
She said she was shocked to learn that about 90 per cent of Malaysian adults had dental caries, and that 75 per cent of them were within the 16-year age group and 50 per cent within the 12-year age category.
"I believe this can be attributed to a lackadaisical attitude among Malaysians as far as oral health is concerned," she said after opening an Oral Health Screening and Dental Treatment at the Ti-Ratana Orphanage and Welfare Home, here.
Rosmah said all parties must take an active interest in dental care and not just leave it to the experts, such as dentists.
"The burden of oral infection and conditions should not be placed entirely on our dentists, surgeons and the government.
"It takes collaborative effort to continue to progress in advancing the oral health of Malaysians," she said.
Rosmah said the 2010 National Oral Health Plan (NOHP) had set the goal to achieve optimum oral health among Malaysians.
At the function, Rosmah handed RM10,000 and food aid worth RM1,000 on behalf of the Malaysian Dental Association to the orphanage, which has 220 children.
Health Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai and Malaysian Armed Forces Dental Director Maj Gen Datuk Dr Sukri Hussin were also present.