SADJ Editorial 2012
21 December 2012
Periodontitis affects between 20% and 50% of the worldwide population 1, and could have an incidence as high as 75% in certain areas 2. Dentists, Oral Hygienists and Periodontists are the primary oral health care providers for these patients. Current literature reviews suggest that there could be a link between Periodontitis and certain systemic diseases. If there were such a link, it would be our responsibility as health care providers to convey this pertinent information to our patients, and to be cognisant of the implications.
The Annual General Meeting of the South African Society of Periodontology (SASP) was held in Cape Town in September 2012. At this meeting we identified this topic of interest, namely, “Periodontitis and Systemic Health”, as our theme for 2013. Professor Londi Shangase, Head of The Department of Oral Medicine and Periodontology at the University of the Witwatersrand, was elected to be the spokesperson and convenor on behalf of SASP.
In 2012, with Professor Andre Van Zyl as spokesperson, the theme “Oral Cancer” was presented to the readers of the SADJ to give them information on this important topic. It was a very successful drive and created lots of positive feedback from members of SADA, SASP and the public.
It is appropriate for us as a Society to rely on the vast amount of experience and expertise of our Universities, and therefore the Periodontal Departments of our Universities were invited to be part of this drive by contributing a literature review of a relevant topic. These reviews will be published seriatim in the SADJ during 2013. We also endeavour to use the authors of these articles to present the most up to date information to their colleagues at SADA meetings. As a final step, the Press will be used to create public awareness.
We hope that by driving our theme, “Periodontitis and Systemic Health”, in 2013, SASP will provide the most up to date information to all SADA and SASP members and in this way to also serve our patients.
Dr Johann Lochner
President of The South African Society for Periodontolog