The Trust’s Oral Health Promotion Team has been shortlisted in the Best Community Initiative category at The Oral Health Awards 2021.
The Oral Health Awards recognise the progress, effort, and enterprise amongst dental professionals in the UK. The awards celebrate the rising standards in UK dentistry and demonstrate the passion towards providing excellent patient care.
The Oral Health Promotion Team, also known as the Tooth Fairies of Nottingham, was nominated for its supervised toothbrushing programme, Brushing Buddies.
Brushing Buddies supports over 2,000 children aged 3-11-year-old across 36 schools in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire, enabling all children to be able to clean their teeth at school every day. School staff receive training from the Oral Health Promotion Team and toothbrushing resources are provided free of charge, including resources to take home. Every school is also linked to a local dental practice for extra support and receives motivational activities including parent workshops, assemblies and child engagement opportunities - all tailor made to suit the audience.
To continue Brushing Buddies during the Covid-19 pandemic, the team increased its digital support too. In April 2020, they created The Crunch, an electronic newsletter for schools, to share activities, competitions and links to oral health resources. The Tooth Fairies also have their very own oral health website, offering information, advice and resources for children, parents and professionals. Over 400 resources have been downloaded from the site since its launch. The team also embraced social media during the pandemic, using YouTube, Twitter and Instagram to share their Tales with the Tooth Fairy series, short stories for children about the importance of looking after their oral health.
Julia Wilkinson, Head of Oral Health Promotion said: “These early years are a really special time to introduce children to the importance of oral health and how to maintain a happy, healthy smile. We’ve been delighted with the development of Brushing Buddies – despite the pandemic, its impact has continued to grow!
“For this to be recognised by the Oral Health Awards is wonderful. We’re overjoyed! It’s a real testament to our hard work, passion and innovation.”
Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony in London on 12 November. Visit www.dentistry.co.uk/awards/oral-health-awards/ for details.