If you needed any more motivation to quit smoking, we’ve collated a few of the most shocking facts to get you into gear.
- Smoking is the biggest cause of death and illness in the UK. More than 120,000 people die each year from diseases caused by smoking.
- There are more than 4,000 chemicals in tobacco smoke and at least 43 of these chemicals can cause cancer.
- On average, the life of a smoker can be as much as 16 years shorter than the life of someone who doesn’t smoke.
- Only 3 in every 100 people manage to stop smoking permanently using will power alone.
- Relapse most frequently occurs in the first few days of a quit attempt when withdrawal symptoms are the greatest.
- 9 out of 10 smokers relapse in the afternoon or evening.
- Research shows smokers are 67% more likely to quit if their partner also stops smoking, 36% more likely to quit if a friend stops and 34% more likely to quit if someone they work with quits.
- Smoking is our biggest preventable killer: 80,000 people die a year in England because of smoking.
- Stopping smoking is the single best thing a person can do for their health.
- On average most people who quit save about £250 each month, which is nearly £3,000 a year.
- More than 80% of secondhand smoke is invisible and odourless.
- Secondhand smoke contains more than 4,000 chemicals including arsenic, benzene and cyanide. More than 50 of the irrtants or toxins are known carcinogens and they’re the ones that can cause cancer.
- People who breathe in secondhand smoke are at risk of the same diseases as smokers, including cancer and heart disease.
- Breathing in secondhand smoke increases a child’s or an adult’s risk of lung cancer by 24% and heart disease by 25%.
- Babies exposed to secondhand smoke are more at risk of cot death.
Smokers across the country have signed up to Stoptober 2015, a 28-day mass quit attempt from Public Health England (PHE), to receive support and encouragement every step of the way from some of the nation’s top comedians.
But do they also realise the added benefits that being smoke-free can have on their mouths?
Here at Denplan, oral health and a preventive approach to maintaining a healthy mouth is at the heart of what we do. Smokers are at a significantly higher risk of suffering from gum disease, tooth decay and even mouth cancer. Regular visits to their dentist play a vital role in detecting early signs of potential problems.
And to stand an even better chance of quitting, they are encouraged to sign up with their friends, family and colleagues, as evidence reveals that this type of ‘social quitting’ can dramatically improve people’s chances of successfully stopping. Smokers are 67% more likely to quit when their spouse quits smoking and 34% more likely when a colleague stops.* So why not encourage your employees to sign up and take advantage of the personalised support this October?
To help your employees quit smoking, click here for posters and how to sign up.
We already have more than enough sugar in our diets from naturally-occurring sources such as whole fruits, vegetables and milk (these are intrinsic sugars) and we don’t need or benefit from eating the sugars that are added to our food and drink.
Sugar-Free September is all about giving up the sugars that are added to our foods and drinks and to help you along, we have a fantastic sugar free recipe for blueberry muffins! Give it a go, and why not tweet us your photos?
- 300g self-raising flour
- 100g unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
- 250g fresh blueberries
- 125g xylitol
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- 140ml semi skimmed milk
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- Pinch of salt
- Preheat the oven to 190℃ / fan 170℃ / gas mark 5 and line a muffin tray with paper muffin cases.
- Using an electric hand whisk, cream together the butter and xylitol until light and fluffy. Gradually whisk in the beaten eggs a little bit at a time until fully mixed in. Don’t worry if the mixture separates slightly.
- Stir in the milk and vanilla extract then fold in the flour, baking powder and salt.
- Fold in the blueberries and spoon the mixture into the muffin cases. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle of a muffin comes out clean (cakes made with xylitol tend not to brown as much as cakes made with sugar).
- Leave the blueberry muffins to cool in the tray for a few minutes before transferring to a rack to finish cooling.
We recently asked 2,000 people in an online survey with OnePoll* about their sugar habits and knowledge, and found some surprising results. Take a look at our infographic for the highlights!
The results also showed a clear need for more clarity on labelling of products, as 54% of respondents admitted that they wanted to reduce their sugar consumption, but just one in five could decipher whether a product contains sugar by reading ingredient labels.
What are the benefits of going sugar free?
As well as reducing your risk of tooth decay, you may also experience weight loss, improved skin and increased energy levels! Giving up processed sugar can have many benefits on your oral health and overall health. Here are a few:
- You’ll reduce the chance of tooth decay
- You may lose weight
- You may feel better and have more energy because you’ll avoid the ‘sugar slump’ you get after eating sugar
- Your skin may improve
- Your immune system may improve
- You may reduce your chances of developing type 2 diabetes
- You may reduce your chances of developing heart disease
- It may slow down the ageing process
- It may reduce your sugar cravings/addiction
- It may improve your mood and stress levels
From a dental perspective, it’s worth noting that it’s how often you eat sugar throughout the day that causes tooth decay, rather than how much. However, from an overall health perspective, it is important to limit your sugar intake and not exceed the daily guidelines (approximately 70g for men and 50g for women).
Avoiding sugar may seem easy if you forego the sweets, chocolates, biscuits and desserts, but did you know that sugar is present in thousands of unexpected grocery items too?
Manufacturers often add sugar to their products to boost the flavour and improve the texture – even if it’s labelled as a ‘low-fat’ or a ‘healthy’ item. Looking at the labels for sugar content isn’t always straightforward either, as there are over 30 different names for sugar – some of which you may not realise are actually sugar. Check out our sugar word cloud infographic which may surprise you!
As well as the obvious things such as cakes, biscuits, chocolate, sweets, fizzy drinks and desserts, sugar is also added to a huge amount of unexpected grocery items. A quick look at the ingredients label of many ready-meals, pasta sauces, soups, ketchup, processed foods, flavoured yoghurts and cereals will reveal surprising amounts of added sugar. And even if you think you’ve chosen a healthy option because it said ‘90% fat-free’ on the packaging, it may well be loaded with hidden sugar to boost the flavour.
Giving up these processed sugars can have many benefits on your oral health and overall health, from reducing the chance of tooth decay, to improving your mood and stress levels. Read more about why to reduce your sugar intake here.
Help your employees improve their overall health and wellbeing and check out our Sugar-Free September Website, designed to encourage and support transitioning to a sugar free lifestyle. From outlining what we Brits know about sugar, to handy sugar-free recipes, we have every aspect of Sugar-Free September covered.
From a dental perspective, it’s worth noting that it’s how often you eat sugar throughout the day that causes tooth decay, rather than how much. However, from
an overall health perspective, it is important to limit your sugar intake and not exceed the daily guidelines (approximately 70g for men and 50g for women).
Sugar-Free September is all about giving up the sugars that are added to our foods and drinks (these are called extrinsic sugars if you’re interested in the sciency bit). We already have more than enough sugar in our diets from naturally-occurring sources such as whole fruits, vegetables and milk (these are intrinsic sugars). We don’t need or benefit from eating the sugars that are added to our food and drink.
Check out our Sugar-Free September Website, designed to encourage and support you and your employees transition to a sugar free lifestyle. From outlining the benefits of cutting out sugar to handy sugar-free recipes, we have every aspect of Sugar-Free September covered.
So why not join Denplan and go sugar-free this September and see how much better you and your employees feel? After a month, you may even adjust how much sugar you consume going forward, which can only be a good thing!
With thousands of Brits now having some form of teeth whitening each year, the desire for a whiter smile seems to be growing. But with so many whitening options out there, what is actually safe?
Having worked as a dentist for 17 years, Henry Clover joined Denplan in 1998 and is now our Deputy Chief Dental Officer. For this article, we’ve asked for his expert advice on tooth whitening and its dangers.
Always see your dental practice for teeth whitening
Under European law, teeth whitening can only be carried out by a dentist or another regulated dental health professional, such as a dental hygienist or dental therapist, working under the prescription of a dentist. Dental professionals can use products that contain or release up to 6 per cent hydrogen peroxide, which can achieve effective levels of whitening.
Don’t be tempted to visit your local beauty salon or spa for teeth whitening
It is illegal for beauty salon staff to carry out teeth whitening. The procedure might not be carried out properly and the bleaching gel may burn sand blister other parts of your mouth.
For more information, see what Henry Clover has to say in our Denplan video: Can tooth whitening damage my teeth?
The internet is full of ‘tips’ to whiten your teeth such as brushing with baking soda or rubbing lemon peel onto your teeth. These can actually damage your teeth.
How effective are over-the-counter whitening kits?
Legally these shouldn’t contain more than 0.1 per cent hydrogen peroxide – if they do, you could harm your teeth.Be aware that those within the safe 0.1 per cent hydrogen peroxide levels have minimal whitening effectiveness as the levels are very low.
In this video, Henry gives us his opinions whitening kits bought online,
If you’re thinking about whitening your teeth, always speak to your dentist to find the most appropriate option for your teeth and budget.
*Please note that, as teeth whitening is a cosmetic treatment, it is not included as part of your Denplan contract. Article is for information purposes only.