The Lagos State Government is set to break another Guinness Book of World Record as it is going to mobilise 300,000 students to break the world record held by India in tooth brushing.
Between 21 and 23 May, 300,000 students in Lagos public secondary schools will brush their teeth simultaneously at different locations in a bid to promote oral health.
The previous record was set by India in 2007 when 177,003 students in the country brushed their teeth simultaneously at a single day.
The 300,000 students would be mobilised from 300 selected public secondary schools in Lagos State.
The government is partnering with the Project Head of the Lagos World Record Tooth Brushing Challenge, Dr. Lawal Bakare to attempt to break the record.
At a news conference on Sunday in Ikeja, Lagos, Southwest Nigeria, Special Adviser to the Governor on Public Health, Dr. Yewande Adeshina said in preparation to set a new world record in tooth brushing, 150 school students would demonstrate the act on 20 March at Teslim Balogun Stadium during the celebration of World Oral Day.
According Adeshina, “one of the unspoken complications of poor dental hygiene is heart disease and a lot of people do not know that if you do not take care of your teeth, if you don’t brush your teeth and visit the dentist at least once a year, you may be prone to getting a heart disease which may kill you.
“We tend to take the mouth for granted but unfortunately, the mouth is actually one of the passages into the body from where we take nourishment and other things. We have a big gap between the educated and the non-educated members of our community in the importance of dental health.
“The way we brush our teeth has been trivialised to the point that over the years as we get older we build germs, we build bacteria and we build diseases in our mouths that may kill us without our knowledge.”
Adeshina added: “we will be taking on the actual challenge in a few weeks’ time when we will have 300,000 students brushing their teeth at the same time in an attempt to break the record set in India where at least 176,000 people brushed their teeth at the same time.”
Project Head, Lagos World Record Tooth Brushing Challenge, Dr. Bakare gave a background to the challenge, saying that in March 2010, he applied to the World Records Limited in the United Kingdom to set a record of the number of people who would be brushing their teeth at the same time at multiple locations.
He stated that “the objective was to use this as a mechanism of improving Oral health literacy for those who would participate in the event.”
According to him, since September 2012 when the first press conference on the Challenge was held in Lagos, a lot of activities had been held, including publishing dental manuals for secondary schools and training over 200 Science teachers as well as engaging the social media to educate the public on oral health all in attempt to ensure that the world record attempt is valuable to all stakeholders even years after the world record has been broken.
“We have formed collaboration between Lagos State Government, Nigerian Dental Association and secondary schools, through the Ministry of Education. All of these are to ensure that the future dates for this event are secure for all and sundry,” he explained.