Throughout National Smile Month 2014, dental hygienist and owner of Dental Health Spa Brighton Christina Chatfield is walking 500 miles for charity.
‘500 miles for 500 smiles’ passes through 32 different locations from Christina’s first dental practice in Kirriemuir, Scotland, to her current practice on the south coast in Brighton. The money raised will go towards mouth cancer, a disease experts have forecast will rise within the next decade and Christina hopes as many people as possible will support her endeavour.
Christina said: 'I feel very passionately about improving oral health, and I am sure this is a sentiment all of my fellow professionals would echo. Mouth cancer is one of the very few forms of cancer on the rise and it currently claims more lives than testicular and cervical cancer combined. We all have a responsibility to help beat the disease and you have the chance to join me and help to make a difference.
'By donating just £10, you could potentially prompt someone into getting checked out, a move that could save their life.'
Chief executive of the British Dental Health Foundation, Dr Nigel Carter OBE, said: 'I am delighted and honoured that Christina has chosen to raise money for Mouth Cancer Action Month. Every year for the last decade we have seen the number of cases and unfortunately deaths from this disease increase. With Christina’s generous support and donation, we can continue to educate the public about the risk factors and the signs and symptoms. If we can prompt them to take action, together we can help turn around these growing figures.'
Welsh actor, Steve Spiers, star of the Sky1 series Stella, is also lending his support to the campaign. Steve said: 'I’m backing this campaign as I was genuinely staggered to hear that more people die of mouth cancer than cervical and testicular cancer together. This sort of ignorance has to be addressed. We can’t rely upon "word of mouth", so let’s get the word of mouth out there! Awareness of the fact may encourage someone to regularly visit their dentist and may indeed mean that lives can be saved.'
To sign up and get involved in the campaign, please visit www.500miles4smiles.org.