“Statistics show that 30% of the population of the United States don’t have to oral healthcare.”
Chance, a co-founder of Smart Smiles, worked with a team to develop a mobile school-based oral health program for those in need.
“We are trying to eliminate some of the barriers for oral health care.”
Access to Preventive Oral Health Care
Millions of Americans are uninsured or underinsured and can’t afford preventive dentistry for themselves or their children. There are also pockets of refugees struggling to make ends meet to feed their families that don’t have access to affordable oral healthcare. Many of these families go without these services and the children are unable to get the help they need.
Smart Smiles is working to change the barrier to preventive dentistry for these families. They find areas of low-income families or areas with a large number of refugees and focus their efforts on the schools in those areas.
Easing another person’s burden is the mission for the team at Smart Smiles.
Oral Healthcare for Refugees
To make this mission possible, Smart Smiles created a mobile dental office. They arrive in a school and set up their equipment in a classroom for the day. The Smart Smiles staff see children one by one and provide the care they need for free.
Then, they take X-rays, clean their teeth, and provide fluoride treatments. A dentist is able to review all of this information remotely and see multiple students at a time. This mobile unit and the advancements in technology is how they are able to treat each of these children for free.
Smart Smiles sees their mobile office as a possible solution for millions of children in need across the United States.
One family from Somalia was particularly grateful. Their family had never seen a dentist.
“She was so excited for her child to be able to have an opportunity here in America to be able to see a dental professional and get the help that their child needs.”
Seeing children return to their classroom with a smile on their face is just one small reward for the team at Smart Smiles. Knowing they are making a difference in a child’s life, even in just a small way, is what it’s all about.