TV doctor advises more social pressure around oral hygiene to reduce tooth decay

British people have become "internationally renowned" for having "really lousy" teeth, and we are too tolerant of it, a doctor has warned.

Dr Chris van Tulleken said tooth decay "doesn't really bother us" in the UK, resulting in much worse oral hygiene than elsewhere in the world.


"In the UK we’re OK with brown, foul teeth, it doesn’t really bother us, while in America it’s very socially unacceptable. And that means we tolerate much higher levels of decay" he told the Radio Times.

Dr van Tulleken also suggested that tooth decay could be fought by greater social pressures surrounding oral hygiene.

He also advised that snacking should be avoided as the mouth becomes acidic for roughly 40 minutes after eating and that fizzy lemon drinks should be avoided as they have "the same acidity levels as stomach acid."

Dr Van Tulleken also said parents should use an egg-timer when children brush their teeth teach them to make sure they brush the back teeth as these are often missed.

The Truth About Your Teeth airs on Thursday 4 and 11 June on BBC1 at 9pm.