The Nigerian Association of Orthodontists has appealed to the Federal Government to give priority attention to training of orthodontists.
The President of the Association, Ifeoma Utomi, made the call in Abuja on Wednesday at the 9th Annual General Meeting of the Association with the theme: “Smile Aesthetics and Psychosocial Wellbeing.’’
Orthodontic is a dental specialty in the correction or alignment of teeth that are not well arranged, with treatment geared toward improving dental and facial appearance.
The branch of dental medicine also seeks to eliminate problems capable of damaging the long term health of the teeth, among others.
Dr. Utomi said that the number of orthodontists in the country, put at 39, was grossly inadequate to meet the needs of a population of over 170 million people. According to her, between 50 per cent and 80 per cent of Nigeria’s population has orthodontic problem, which denies them of social activities.
She added that malocclusion, which she described as the improper alignment of the teeth, could deny people from getting a job and enjoying general wellbeing.
The dental practitioner, however, explained that training of more orthodontists would relieve Nigerians of such problems.