Specialist Dental Group has launched an on-going series of blog posts by our individual dental specialists. All views provided are the dentist’s own opinions and are posted on this blog as part of our on-going efforts to educate the public about dental issues and other matters of interest relating to dentistry and healthcare.
As the year draws to a close, we are constantly inundated with commercial images and jingles about the impending festive season. Before the year end festivities is upon us, let’s take a step back and spare a thought for the less fortunate and the sick.
Interestingly, while surfing the web, I’ve discovered that besides being the National Diabetes month, November is also the month of Movember.
During Movember, males are encouraged to grow their moustache to raise awareness for men’s health, in particular prostate cancer. The Movember Foundation runs the Movember charity event, and their goal is to «change the face of men’s health.»
In Singapore, as in most Asian societies, Cancer is still a taboo topic to be approached in hushed tones. The fear of acknowledging that one is suffering from cancer often puts the person at greater risk. Although prostate cancer is the 3rd most prevalent cancer in Singapore, it is also often treatable with early detection and intervention.
Studies have also started to show a clear link between oral health and prostate disease. Researchers have discovered that patients with gum disease also exhibit elevated PSA markers (an indication of inflammation in prostate disease.)
Fear, ignorance, pride and indifference are often reflected in the “Machismo” men exhibit when dealing with cancer.
Movember aims to change this trend and give a face and voice to those suffering in silence. While not all of us are so well endowed in terms of facial hair, we can certainly do our part in other ways to encourage our friends and family to approach illness proactively and not to hide in the shadows.
So in the spirit of Movember, let’s go through our daily lives in full force. Gentlemen (and ladies too), this is a gentle reminder to go for regular checkups with your doctors and dentists. Stay healthy in body, mind and spirit. Remember to approach whatever life throws at us fearlessly.
Dr. Edwin Tan is a Dental Specialist in Prosthodontics with Specialist Dental Group®. He is also a Senior Adjunct Lecturer with the Department of Restorative Dentistry at the National University of Singapore. Dr Tan has a special interest in dental implants, crowns and aesthetic dentistry. For more information, visit www.specialistdentalgroup.com.