In conjunction with Breast Cancer Awareness month this October, we would like to highlight a section of the demographic that may be easily overlooked in terms of their health. We hope this serves as a reminder that domestic helpers are part of our family too.
As a dental clinic, our expertise is to give dental advice, educate people on dental health, and to keep them abreast of dental issues that they may be having.
In most households in Asia these days, it is a norm to have female Foreign Domestic Workers (FDW) working as domestic helpers or housemaids as they reside in a foreign country and live with their employers.
According to research paper International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health, published online from Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore, most FDWs have poor knowledge on their health risks such as dental problems and other illnesses.
With economic development in Singapore today, demand for domestic workers is here to stay. There are ways on how we can take better care of oral health of FDWs when needed:
- Educate them on the importance of brushing and flossing at least twice a day, for at least two minutes each time. Most importantly, teach them the right technique of tooth brushing
- Bring them to see a dentist for a dental check-up if they have persisting bleeding/swollen gums, unresolved bad breath issues as this could be a sign of other overall health dysfunction
- Schedule them for a regular check-up at least twice a year to detect and monitor any underlying oral issues as the labour-sending countries they come from usually do not have an advanced healthcare system
As an employer, it is in our vested interest that our foreign domestic helpers get the help they need, especially when their role is critical to economic contribution as well.
Stay tuned for our next post in relation to Breast Cancer Awareness Month by one of our dentists!