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prevention International magazine for oral health No. 1, 2018

theory of prophylaxis | European Federation of Periodontology Periodontal disease and caries—The most common human conditions Periodontal disease and dental caries are the two most widespread oral conditions in the world and in fact the two most prevalent non-communicable human diseases. Both are prevent- able1 and share common genetic, aetiological and environmental factors. Given that they follow different trajectories, they have traditionally been studied separately. Not anymore. For the first time, the European Federation of Periodontology (EFP) has put forward a new, common approach by launching Perio and Caries, an ambitious Europe-wide project aimed at raising aware- ness among scientists, health practitioners and the public about the associated causes, risk factors, interactions and prevention measures than may affect both periodontal disease and dental caries. The core element of the Perio and Caries project is the newly created dedicated site, which con- tains a wealth of educational materials, which are freely available and downloadable. These publications include a specially written scientific report compiled by Prof. Nicola West, as well as five targeted recommendation brochures, each providing concise ad- vice for oral health professionals, other healthcare professionals, researchers, policymakers and the population at large. The Perio and Caries initiative, sponsored by Colgate, has been designed to disseminate the outcomes of Perio Workshop 2016, a major scientific meeting held in La Granja in Spain and jointly organised by the EFP and Euro- pean Organisation for Caries Research (ORCA). It was co-chaired by Prof. Mariano Sanz (EFP) and Prof. Andreas Schulte (ORCA). All Perio and Caries publications are based on the knowledge generated at Perio Workshop 2016. Based on the contributions from 75 leading global cariologists and periodontologists organised in four working groups, Perio Workshop 2016 pioneered the exploration of the boundaries between dental caries and periodontal disease. It reviewed all available scientific evidence on common links between these oral conditions, in- cluding identified similarities—and the distinct characteristics of each—and recommended clear preventative strategies to help tackle them. The scientific conclusions of Perio Workshop 2016 are publicly available in a special open-access supplement of the EFP-edited Journal of Clinical Periodontology.2 Furthermore, the Perio and Caries site offers a series of related videos, news, additional documentation and all the scientific papers produced by the four working groups at Perio Workshop 2016, which examined the role of microbial biofilms; the interaction of lifestyle, behaviour and systemic disease; prevention and control; and age-related effects, all in relation to dental caries and periodontal disease. Available free to everybody Perio and Caries materials are to be shared with all 30 EFP-affiliated national societies of periodontology in Europe, northern Africa, the Middle East and the Caucasus, and their members—around 14,000 periodontists, other dentists, researchers and other oral healthcare professionals interested in gingival health. Stakeholders can freely take advantage of this Perio and Caries content in their dental practices, schools, laboratories and companies. The same applies to any other people who may be interested. “The project Perio and Caries disseminates for the first time a new approach to dental caries and periodontal disease as connected conditions,” explained Prof. Mariano Sanz. “Building on the outcomes of Perio Workshop 2016, Perio and Caries pays attention to the common risk factors that make people lose their teeth because of caries, periodontitis or both. Emphasis has been put on patients’ quality of life, not only how these widespread oral diseases impact upon their well-being, but also the reverse situation, how socioeconomic factors heavily influence the prevention, development and treat- ment of these diseases.” “Sugar intake, smoking and excess weight are the three key factors to be reduced in order to help tackle both periodontal disease and caries,” pointed out Prof. Iain Chapple, Secretary General of the EFP and co-chair of one of Perio Work- shop 2016’s working groups. “By bringing down carbohydrate intake to less than 25 gramme per day, by fighting and ideally eliminating the smok- ing habit, and by avoiding obesity, we are not only improving our general health, but having a meaningful, positive impact against periodontal disease and dental caries.” “The main message of Perio and Caries is that tooth loss, periodon- tal disease and caries are nearly always preventable,” concluded West. “Following simple recommendations such as brushing teeth with fluoride toothpaste twice a day, reducing the amount of sugar and starch in the diet, staying away from tobacco, and seeing your dentist twice a year would improve dental and overall health, as well as alleviate the economic burden of periodontal disease and dental caries. We hope that medical professionals will heed our campaign’s motto: ‘Teeth are for a lifetime. Take action!’ and will guide their patients accordingly.” Editorial note: A list of references can be obtained from the publisher. prevention 1 2018 09

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