Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Vampire video aims to help improve Portsmouth's teeth

Lola Molar
Image caption The vampire video character, Lola Molar, has a Facebook page

A viral vampire video is at the centre of a new dental health campaign in Portsmouth.

Inspired by films and TV series such as Twilight, it features a victim being appalled by a vampire's bad teeth.

The social media campaign follows research into the barriers preventing young people from going to the dentist.

NHS Portsmouth's Lee Loveless said: "Traditional methods to engage young men haven't worked. We have looked at what appeals to our target group."

The tongue-in-cheek video, entitled Want a Dentist after Dark?, was originally produced for NHS Northamptonshire.

It has been adapted for Portsmouth which has traditionally had poor levels of dental health.

Facebook smiles

Research carried out for the NHS in the city showed that among men aged 16 to 35 the main motivation to take care of teeth was having fresh breath and an attractive smile as their photos were increasingly appearing on social networking websites such as Facebook.

It also showed young men were more likely to brush regularly or go to the dentist when their mother or girlfriend reminded them.

Mr Loveless said: "Young men in particular will only go to the dentist when they are in trouble and have pain.

"We want them to focus on regular treatment and go down the preventative route," he added.

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