Childsmile and Oral Health Improvement
NHS Shetland's Childsmile and Oral Health Improvement Team is tasked with local implementation of national oral health programmes like Childsmile, Smile4Life and Caring for Smiles, as well as providing oral health education and support across Shetland.
What is Childsmile?
Childsmile is a national programme designed to improve the oral health of children in Scotland and reduce inequalities both in health and access to dental services.
The programme consists of four parts: Childsmile Core – the distribution of free dental packs and supervised brushing in all nurseries and in primaries 1 and 2. Childsmile Nursery & school – provide clinical prevention programmes offering twice-yearly fluoride varnishing by the Public Dental Service.
Childsmile Practice - provides an accessible, child centred NHS dental service through a network of Public Dental service providers and Independant General Dental Practices.
Oral Health Improvement (OHI) Nurse
Improving oral health in Scotland is a priority aim for the Scottish Government with children's oral health at the centre. The OHI nurse is available to support schools with any Oral Health Education learning outcomes and classroom projects regarding oral health as well as to provide information and guidance regarding tuck shops and healthy snacks in general. Their job includes:
Developing lesson plans and workshops for delivery to a range of abilities and ages through schools and other settings.
Delivering and supporting toothbrushing and fluoride varnish programmes within school and nursery settings.
Involvement with multi disciplinary health promotion events – e.g. children and family days, parent evenings, community and career events.
Delivering OHE and Childsmile Practice appointments within dental clinics and other settings.
Supporting anxious or learning disability patients with their oral care, including acclimatisation to the dental clinic environment.
Supporting local delivery of the National Oral Health Improvement Programme for Homeless People – Smile4Life.
Providing training for both health professionals and outside agencies.