The ACFF Spain Chapter was launched in 2019 and is co-Chaired by Dr Teresa Almerich, Dr Miguel Hernández, and Dr Elena Martínez. Since its launch, the Spanish Chapter has worked hard to bring together initiatives across the country which focus on ensuring that prevention is at the forefront of discussions within the Spanish dental landscape.
Dental caries is the most prevalent non-communicable disease (NCD) in the world and is one of the biggest challenges for public health worldwide. Free sugars are the main risk factor for tooth decay and many other NCDs. Excessive and frequent consumption of free sugars increases the risk of diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, and numerous types of cancer. Health professionals such as doctors, paediatricians, nurses, nutritionists, pharmacists, and of course, dentists and oral hygienists, must be updated and prepared to give dietary advice to their patients on the consumption of free sugars.
After a year of intense interdisciplinary work, the ACFF Spain Chapter is proud to announce its latest endorsed project: the ‘Stop Sugar-Stop Caries’ programme. The project was born in the Primary Care Dentistry clinics, specifically in the Seminario Health Centre in Zaragoza, Spain where a group of professionals made up of hygienists, dentists, pharmacists, and doctors, came up with the idea of creating a programme explaining the free sugars hidden in some foods and drinks with the purpose to raise awareness among their patients.
The initial project was a great success and subsequently more professionals, including nutritionists, have since joined the programme to expand it. Members of the Spanish Society of Epidemiology and Oral Public Health (SESPO) and National Health System workers have collaborated in the ‘Stop Sugar-Stop Caries’ programme, and it has been endorsed by the Spanish Chapter of the Alliance for a Cavity-Free Future. The project has also received funding from Colgate Spain.
The main objectives of the ‘Stop Sugar-Stop Caries’ project are:
- Make the population aware of the relationship between sugar consumption and dental caries
- Publicise the presence of “hidden sugars” in food and beverages
- And raise awareness among health professionals of the importance of promoting a healthy diet to reduce dental caries and other NCDs among the population
The final project includes health education materials for patients and families. This includes explanatory posters, videos, a guide about diet micronutrients and their influence on oral health, as well as complementary information through QR codes that can be scanned with any mobile phone or tablet. All information and resources can be downloaded for free on the ACFF Spanish Chapter website: https://chapters.acffglobal.org/spain/proyecto-stop-azucar-stop-caries/
A big thank you to our ACFF Spain Chapter Chairs, members, and collaborators for all their hard work.