The 26th of May is Memorial Day. It’s a time to both reflect and remember the dedication and commitment of those who served and sacrificed in the United States Armed Forces.
Today over two million men and women serve in the U.S. military, including those on active duty, and in the National Guard and the Air National Guard. So Memorial Day is also a day to give thanks to those who are currently serving.
Dental Care Should not Be a Sacrifice to Service
We know men and women in the military give up a lot to protect us and keep us safe. But quality dental care should not be part of their sacrifices. But it’s not so easy to get deployed troops in to regularly see the dentist, especially for those stationed in remote areas of Afghanistan and Africa. And the government already spends over one hundred billion dollars every year on dental services for servicemen and women.
Operation Combat Gum
Fortunately the military is committed to optimal dental hygiene for its troops. That’s why they have invested in a product called Combat Gum. Military leaders know that healthy, well-trained troops are essential, and dental care is a key part of the equation.
Fall Out and Start Chewing!
Combat Gum is a peppermint-flavored gum specially designed to reduce plaque and bacteria in the mouth. It has already been distributed to troops on active duty, and plans are in the works for its even wider distribution. Soldiers are currently instructed to chew the gum for at least 20 minutes after every meal. The gum is not intended as a substitute for brushing and flossing. But regular use has been proven to lower the risks of periodontal disease.
This specialty gum is not cheap. It costs about two dollars per piece. But currently the United States spends over 100 billion dollars or military dental services. Dental problems also typically result in the evacuation of at least 10% of American military personnel every year. So military experts believe that Combat Gum will eventually yield beneficial results by substantially lowering the cost of dental care.
Gum For The Rest of Us
The gum is currently available only to service members. But this gum is stronger than any sugar-free gum currently on the market. And the military hopes that sometime in the near future this gum will be widely available on an over-the-counter basis.
The Cindy Flanagan, D.D.S. Team salutes the men and women who sacrificed their lives through their service in the United States Armed Forces. On this Memorial Day we also wish to say thank you to those currently serving. May you have a both a blessed and mouth-healthy day.
Image Source: flickr.com/photos/abrowning/2814723277