World Endodontic Day celebrated to stress need to save natural teeth from extractions

Oct 16, 2023

New Delhi [India], October 16 : For the first time, dentists are celebrating October 16 as World Endodontic Day to spread awareness among people about the need to preserve their natural teeth from root canal infection and extractions.
The campaign also aims to draw the attention of government and healthcare planners to make oral health an integral priority of the overall national healthcare mission.
The former president of the Dental Council of India shared details of this campaign.
The public is aware of dental caries or tooth decay as a common disease of the oral cavity. However, few people realize that dental caries in a tooth slowly progresses over a few months to a year's time going deeper into the tooth causing dental nerve pain and bone infection around the roots of the tooth. This disease is known as Apical Periodontitis (AP).
According to Professor Dr Gopi Krishna from Chennai who is also Secretary General for the International Federation of Endodontic Associations (IFEA), said, "Half of the adult population worldwide have at least one diseased tooth with apical periodontitis (AP)".
This finding from a global study covering more than 40 countries including India was published last year in the International Endodontic Journal.
He added, "Data from surveys conducted in various Indian cities found close to two-thirds (65 per cent) of the adult population of India having at least one tooth with apical periodontitis."
He emphasized that a nationwide awareness campaign and effort is needed to reduce this disease that would affect every alternate Indian in their lifetime in the coming decades posing a huge burden on public and government health care expenditure.
According to United Nations ESCAP data, 68 per cent of the Indian adult population has crossed one billion individuals. Dr Ajay Logani, Professor CDER - AIIMS, New Delhi added that the prevalence of dental caries in the Indian adult population has been established as 62 per cent which is extremely high. If we do not treat dental decay at an early stage then such a tooth will progress to becoming a tooth with apical periodontitis. The more sensible long-term dental solution would be to save such teeth with endodontic (root canal therapy) procedures instead of the traditional approach of extracting such teeth.
Dr Anil Kohli, Former President, Dental Council of India said, "Loss of teeth leads to improper chewing of food and indigestion that has a direct correlation with decreased quality of life. Dentists and Endodontists are capable of performing a wide range of predictable and scientifically backed root canal therapy also known as endodontic procedures that save millions of teeth every year."
IFEA and the Indian Endodontic Society (IES) are conducting a global campaign to improve awareness regarding this disease through the World Endodontic Day campaign.
Prof Dr Sanjay Miglani, President - IES said that a coordinated nationwide program by more than 100 colleges and institutions across India is being done on October 16th to improve public awareness of this silent epidemic.
Prof Dr Sangeeta Talwar, Former Director - Principal of Maulana Azad Institute of Dental Sciences, New Delhi said that periodic dental check-ups and maintaining good oral hygiene are simple measures in preventing this disease and maintaining oral health. Dr Vivek Hegde, Former- President - IES further added that World Endodontic Day is an important day to highlight the need for a collective effort to make oral health in India a priority.