The European Federation of Periodontology (EFP) engaged a group of international experts to systematically review evidence from clinical studies to create clinical guidelines for the treatment of periodontitis (gum disease).
The British Society of Periodontology and Implant Dentistry (BSP) has moved rapidly to take the European document and develop a British version of the guidelines, making sure they were suitable for the UK healthcare system. The paper has been published in the Journal of Dentistry: https://authors.elsevier.com/sd/article/S0300-5712(20)30310-9
The BSP has been supported by GSK to record several educational videos and produce flowchart resources to help dental care professionals to implement the guidelines in clinical practice. By creating a series of short video clips, to be shared via social media and its website, the BSP can help to spread the important educational message to the wider dental profession, patients and the public. The BSP aims to distribute its clinical guideline flowchart to all dental practices in the UK to accompany their classification flow chart.
A lay version of the guidelines for the public and patients is also being produced. It was extremely important to the BSP to involve patients, who could present their important viewpoints in the workshops. They have also been involved in the process of creating a lay version of the guidelines. This lay version will allow patients to empower themselves with evidence-based information to both take responsibility for aspects of their disease management and know that they are being offered appropriate, contemporary, evidence-based treatment.
In addition, the BSP has created a lay flowchart, which conveys the importance of gum health in a simplified, informative way. The aim in creating resources for patients and the public include:
- Help the public understand what gum disease is
- Raise awareness of how you can look after your gums and maintain good oral health
- Reduce the stigma associated with gum disease (as highlighted in ‘The Sound of Periodontitis’ video) by identifying the many causes including smoking and diabetes
- Highlight that more can be done to aid gum health in addition to brushing your teeth
- Encourage the patient to take ownership of their disease and highlight the ways they can do this