New regulations promote healthier teeth

As a parent, no doubt you have suffered the arguments as your children demand to have the latest sweet snack that has caught their attention in an advert. Luckily, life just got a little bit easier for you with the introduction of a new piece of law in the UK. On 1st July 2017, a ban was introduced on junk food advertising aimed at children. So what is the new ban all about and why do we need it?

What is banned?

The new rules, which have been introduced by the Committee of Advertising Practice, mean that it is no longer acceptable to advertise high fat, salt or sugar (HFSS) food or drink products in traditional media, online media and other sites where children make up over 25% of the audience.

With one in three British 15-year-olds classed as ‘extreme internet users’ who spend at least six hours a day online, even outside of school holidays, young people are subject to vast amounts of advertising and glorification of products that may not have their best interests at heart. Luckily, the new law finally introduces measures to tackle this.

Members of the public have been encouraged to alert authorities to examples of junk food advertising that could appeal to children and are in violation of the new rules.

To help support the introduction of the new rules, ‘Operation Eagle Eye’ has been launched by food and farming charity Sustain through their Children’s Food Campaign (CFC), encouraging people to submit complaints where appropriate if they feel food and soft drink companies are breaking regulations in the way they promote their products.

It is important to note, however, that the ban does not yet apply to television. The Oral Health Foundation, an independent charity (not for profit) dedicated to improving oral health and wellbeing around the world, is continuing to campaign and is hoping to see similar changes brought to other platforms, such as TV, that will not be affected by these new regulations.

Why does it matter?

The consumption of high sugar foods in children is causing huge damage to the oral health of young people, leading to problems of an unprecedented scale.

According to Dr Nigel Carter OBE, CEO of the Oral Health Foundation, a charity working to improve oral health, “In the last two years alone, more than 34,000 rotten teeth have been removed from young children under general anaesthetic in the UK, this is absolutely scandalous, particularly given that this is entirely avoidable.”

Not only do the issues that arise cause discomfort and distress for children, they also put parents under stress, as well as placing a burden on our public health services.

Any action to encourage a healthier lifestyle can only be positive for families, and will also help to promote the messages that the dental community has been working hard to promote over the last few decades.

Of course, while avoiding sugary snacks has tremendous benefits, it is important to maintain a good oral hygiene routine for your family. This means ensuring that your children brush their teeth last thing at night and at least one other time during the day with a fluoride toothpaste and visit the dentist regularly, as often as they recommend.

At Bridge Dental & Implant Clinic in Derby, we pride ourselves in offering the very best in preventative dentistry for all the family. We are currently taking on new patients, and for a limited time only are offering free child places. To enquire about becoming a member now, call us on Derby 01332 916351 or click here to contact us online.

Posted by Bridge Dental and Implant Clinic on 13th July 2017, under Children

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