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Mpya Zaidi

'Intensify clinical research to curb dental problems'

MEDICAL experts have called for intensified clinical research as a requisite to curb increasing dental related problems in the country.

Bugando Medical Centre (BMC) Principal Dental Surgeon in the Oral Department, Dr Said  Chwaya told the 'Daily News' that dental related cases have in recent past increased. "This problem has not been well researched especially here in Tanzania. It is, therefore, pertinent for medical practitioners and other relevant authorities to intensify clinical research in this area," said Dr Chwaya.

The expert explained that Mwanza Region is one of the areas that have in the recent past witnessed increasing number of dental related cases. "In the year 2011, for example, we handled a total of 2203 cases here at BMC out of which 1168 (53 per cent) were dental decay, while 741 were accident related  cases,"   says the expert.

He added that an average of 15 and 10 new dental cases are attended at BMC and Nyamagana district hospitals, on a daily basis, respectively. The dentist also narrated that between the 1980s and 1990s, for example, there were less than 500 cases that were reported in medical centres in Mwanza Region.

"Young people under the age of 12 years are prone to dental problems. If prevention and curable measures are not taken, it will soon become even more acute and leads to dental decay and toothless," explained Dr Chwaya. The elderly are normally attacked by diseases that affect tissues and other areas around gums and in the long run affecting teeth.

Nyamagana District Medical Officer in-charge, Dr  Kajiru Mhando said that dental diseases affect a larger part of the population.
In Tanzania, the general public is not well informed and sometimes takes it for granted simply because the problem is less fatal as compared to other diseases, such as, Malaria and HIV-AIDS.

Experts say that young people aged between 15-25 years are more vulnerable to dental related problems, attributed to excessive consumption of sugar related products.

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