22/11/2017 11:29 GMT | Updated 22/11/2017 11:29 GMT

Oral Health V Mental Health

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Oral Health V Mental Health

Without question we all expect to go to the dentist every 6 months for our routine oral health check-up. It’s part of our culture and expected. If we don’t turn up at our appointments we get reminders and phone calls. Dentists, implant specialists, smile in a day, veneers, hygienists…we have it all covered beautifully allowing us to smile with confidence.

Dentistry has come a long way in short period of time. It was not so long ago before the daughter was to be married – as a gift from the future mother in law – the mother arranged for all her daughters teeth to be extracted as not to burden her husband with bad oral hygiene concerns. Thankfully times have changed and this of course would never happen as we have learned and come so far.

There are also calls from some areas of society for parents who allow their children’s oral hygiene to become an issue that they be held accountable and charged with neglect.

We wince when we hear of others not maintaining their dental appointments.

In schools there are campaigns to have the children participate with tooth brushing from nursery. Child Smile has been an incredible game changer for oral health over the years.

So why can’t we maintain our mental health with the same precision ? why has our society allowed our own minds, neurology and psychology to lapse seeing a huge demand on services which we are not prepared for?

If we had the same momentum behind mental health maintenance where it becomes ‘routine’ to check it, surely this will help mitigate the whole need for clinical intervention later down the line?

This is why my goal is to create a campaign to make mental health routinely checked. I along with thousands of others want to see a world where we can all talk about our brain openly without fear or judgement.

Even though it causes billions of pounds of lost time at work, lost revenue and huge impacts on families, we still don’t make it a ‘routine’ maintenance.

We have come a long way – the more awareness we are all raising, the more people seek help and guidance, the more we realise there are not the resources to cope with the demand.

It’s time for huge change and a wakeup call.

I’ve just returned from the USA where I’m humbled and honoured to say I attended the most extraordinary charity event. I was a guest of an incredibly passionate about mental health family. It was an unbelievable night and one where every single person there was united in creating a world of change towards mental health and mental illness - or brain disorder as some would like to refer to it as.

The charity is called ‘Bring Change To Mind’. The reason they strike me as being up there as far as campaigning goes is due to their behind the scenes research – and also their public service announcements (PSA) are brilliant. They really do work as they touch us all on so many levels.

Also one of the most inspiring parts to me is the board members.

Everyone on the board has been effected by the complexities of these illnesses in some way. They have an array of members and all want to spend their lives helping to change other people’s lives. This is a force like no other I’ve seen and done with huge determination to end the stigma and create real, tangible change with passion, love and hope even though they have been through some very personal traumas.

Whilst in the US I was also given a very rare opportunity to talk at a local high school over two days to teachers and pupils. It was a real life changing feeling for me as they all gave me so much in return without even realising it. I hope to return next year…

I hope this blog gets seen by a huge amount of people and we all unite in the same goal…a world where there is no stigma, a workplace, school, home or university where we all feel psychologically safe and can access treatment without years of delays.

Where early intervention is key and done through our ‘routine’ checks ;)

Some of the amazing young ambassadors at the event :

#anorexia #mentalhealth #mentalillness #recovery #hope #love #bc2m