Scleroderma is not a commonly known disease, but the autoimmune disorder can be crippling. Scleroderma is a hardening and thickening of skin that can take away the use of fingers, hands, limbs and affect oral health. For many, it can be a life-threatening disease.
In the month of June, the Scleroderma Foundation and the Scleroderma Research Foundation will work together to raise awareness with the campaign "Hard word. Harder disease." This will culminate in World Scleroderma Day on June 29 when the foundations will use the campaign website Thunderclap to spread the message of awareness to Facebook and Twitter.
People afflicted with scleroderma can struggle with dry mouth, jaw pain and gum disease. According to the National Institutes of Health, the best ways to combat the effects of scleroderma is to keep your mouth moist, avoid mouthwash that contains alcohol, visit the dentist frequently and ask if there are any special rinses or toothpastes.
More information on scleroderma and the Scleroderma Awareness Month campaign can be found on Twitter or Facebook by searching for the hashtag #hardword, or going to www.hardword.org.© American Dental Association. All rights reserved. Reproduction or republication is strictly prohibited without the prior written permission from the American Dental Association.