The project was conducted in primary and secondary schools in the rural parts of the state of Maharashtra to promote and improve oral health awareness amongst children and their parents. It is said that lifelong habits are formed at an early age. Good habits should be inculcated in children at a young age including maintenance of oral hygiene. The main aim of the project was to focus on increasing standards of oral hygiene and to prevent development of dental diseases in under-privileged areas by conducting free dental check-ups, emergency treatment of children in pain and distribution of information leaflets. These activities helped in educating children and their parents in proper oral hygiene practices. Emergency treatment was possible due to the fully equipped dental mobile vans. The project has been vital in promoting dental health awareness in schools located in areas where the understanding remains abysmally low about these aspects.
Children of Primary and Secondary schools in the rural parts of the state of Maharashtra located in Western part of India in the age group ranging from 6 to 16 years of age.
The project was funded by a dental school in Mumbai, India. The funding was required for the printing of information leaflets, gathering materials for fillings, surgical instruments for extraction and dental procedures, and a fully operating dental chair in the mobile van for the treatment of children with pain and discomfort related to dental problems. This prevented any further delay in their treatment due to difficulty in arranging appointments or due to financial hardships.
The project started in 2003 and has been undertaken annually by one of the dental schools in Mumbai and has spread across the state of Maharashtra since then. I was involved in this project in 2004 and 2006. Through this project, I could reach children that have limited access to dental care and need to be aware of the importance of good oral hygiene. I was also able to educate parents about different ways of maintaining healthy dentition for their children.