Smiling Brazil: recognizing history to reinforce the constant struggle for equity in Dentistry




Delivery of Health Care; Dental Health Surveys; Epidemiologic surveillance services.


The 1988 Constitution represented a milestone in health management in Brazil, a fact that also reflected in oral health practices. Professionals in the dental sector have always been on the margins of the health system in Brazil. In the early 2000s, based on the new National Oral Health Policy, “Brasil Sorridente”/“Smiling Brazil” was created, whose main lines of action were: the reorganization of primary care in oral health, with the implementation and expansion of oral health teams in the Family Health Strategy; and expansion and qualification of Specialized Care. The work process in oral health underwent a reorganization, focusing on interdisciplinarity, multidisciplinarity and intersectoriality. Among the health promotion and disease prevention actions, those related to water fluoridation, health education (healthy nutritional behaviors, smoking reduction, proper oral hygiene etc), supervised oral hygiene, topical application of fluoride and active measures of prevention of dental caries, periodontal disease and oral cancer. The national survey “SB Brasil 2010” showed positive results from the implementation of “Brasil Sorridente”/“Smiling Brazil”. In this epidemiological examination, Brazil became part of the group of countries with a low rate of dental caries, based on data from the caries index at 12 years of age. The main difficulties faced by this policy refer to poor management and low funding. The new coronavirus pandemic and the strategies adopted by the Brazilian government to minimize the consequences of this disease also reflected in the increase of inequities in oral health. It is important to deepen our knowledge of the “Smiling Brazil” policy and update ourselves according to the political-social context in which we live, in order to be active in the fight for greater expansion of access and qualification of this policy.

Author Biographies

Gerson Aparecido Foratori-Junior, Universidade de São Paulo

Department of Pediatric Dentistry, Orthodontics and Public Health

Gilberto Alfredo Pucca Junior, Universidade de Brasília

Department of Dentistry


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How to Cite

FORATORI-JUNIOR, G. A.; PUCCA JUNIOR, G. A. Smiling Brazil: recognizing history to reinforce the constant struggle for equity in Dentistry. Research, Society and Development, [S. l.], v. 10, n. 10, p. e75101018745, 2021. DOI: 10.33448/rsd-v10i10.18745. Disponível em: Acesso em: 21 apr. 2024.



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