Most parents know the struggle of getting kids to brush their teeth - but one group of students may now be more enthusiastic about the task thanks to a visit from All Blacks captain Kieran Read.
Read surprised students at his old primary school, Opaheke School in Papakura, with a visit today to help them brush up on their oral health.
He surprised the students at assembly and taught a class of 7-year-olds about how sugar affects teeth using a Colgate Bright Smiles, Bright Futures science experiment involving sugar and yeast.
When sugar was added to a mixture of yeast and warm water it foamed up - much like the way sugar in your mouth creates plaque.
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Ministry of Health figures showed 29,000 children under 15 had teeth removed due to decay, abscess, infection or gum disease in 2015-16.
Over the same period, more than 6600 children under 12 needed a general anaesthetic to remove one or more rotten teeth – with the rate highest for under 10-year-olds.