Putting the bite on cancer

Ferryburn Dental practice support charity walkers
Ferryburn Dental practice support charity walkers

A caring duo from a dental practice in Queensferry joined hygienist Christina Chatfield as she walked from Queensferry to Leith as part of a 500 mile trek to raise awareness of mouth cancer.

Dentist Maria Papavergos and practice manager Karen McPherson from Ferryburn Dental Care accompanied Christina on the 11 mile trip along the River Forth on Friday, May 23.

Christina, who was voted dental hygienist of the year in 2012, began her walk in Kirriemuir where her career began, on Monday, May 19, the start of National Smile Month.

Her journey, sponsored by dental charity Heart Your Smile and the British Dental Health Foundation, will take her through 32 towns and cities before concluding the walk at her current place of work, the Dental Health Spa in Brighton.

After the walk, Maria said: “Mouth cancers have a far higher mortality rate than both breast cancer and cervical cancer at just over 50 per cent.

‘‘It kills one person every three hours in the UK because of late detection and we just don’t believe that these are acceptable statistics.

“The early stages of mouth cancer can often be spotted by a dentist as he or she is able to see parts of the mouth that are not normally visible to patients themselves.

‘‘The earlier the disease is recognised, the higher the chances are of curing it.

‘‘Everyone at Ferryburn Dental Care is committed to raising awareness of mouth cancer and this walk is a great way for people to hear about the disease.”

Karen added: “It’s an amazing feeling to take part in a charity event with someone as inspirational as Christina.

‘‘We’re really pleased to have been able to support her on her way to Brighton and we’d like to wish her the best of luck for the rest of her journey.”

To find out more about Christina’s journey, visit www.500miles4smiles.org

To donate to the charity bid go to http://www.justgiving.com/500miles4smiles

So far £4,627.03 has been pledged from 160 donations.