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​Dentists in Northern Ireland support fishing crews to get 'Sea Fit'

30 April 2019



Northern Ireland Dental Practice Committee Chair, Richard Graham with colleagues at the Sea Fit event

Dentists in Northern Ireland took part in providing dental checks for fishing crews as part of the 'Helping fisherman get Sea Fit' programme at local ports. 

Organised by the Fishermen's Mission and the Seafarers Hospital Society, to promote healthy living to fishing crew workers and their families, three events took place at Ardglass, Portavogie and Kilkeel during March and April. 

At the events, crews were encouraged to get health checks with dental, eye and support from other healthcare workers.

Dentists from the Northern Ireland Dental Practice Committee referred 29 patients for follow-up treatment at Kilkeel port. 

They assessed patients' oral health, helping to identify problems and recommending referral for treatment, as well as giving oral health promotion advice, to encourage crew members to look after their teeth.

The fishing crews included workers from Ghana, Eastern Europe and Sri Lanka, as well as local fishermen.

Richard Graham, Chair of the Northern Ireland Dental Practice Commitee, said:

"We were delighted to take part in this campaign to help assess the state of teeth of crews working on fishing vessels, who often spend a long-time away from home, and so don't always have time to put their oral health, or general health first.

"Quite a few of the patients we saw had problems, and were in pain, but hadn't sought to access dental care, so we hope that they now feel more motivated to get treatment and to take a more preventative approach to their oral health."


BDA Northern Ireland

BDA Northern Ireland supports, represents and promotes, the interests of all dentists working in Northern Ireland. Working with elected committee members, we negotiate on behalf of the profession on terms and conditions, pay and contracts. Join us.