Posted February 21, 2014
The Give Kids a Smile Day will be at the Idaho State University Dental Hygiene Clinic 4 to 7 p.m. Feb. 21 and 9 a.m.-noon Feb. 22.
An estimated 90 children from local low-income families will receive dental services at no cost ranging from general dental exams and professional fluoride applications to fillings as part of the national Give Kids a Smile Day.
The Give Kids a Smile program began in 2003 as a way for dental professionals to give back to their community, focusing especially on underserved children who otherwise would not receive dental care. Dental decay is the No. 1 chronic illness among children.
Children from families with annual incomes of $10,000 to $20,000 have 10 times more unmet dental needs than children whose families earn more than $50,000. Pain from untreated dental disease can prevent a child from properly eating, sleeping, speaking and paying attention in school, affecting growth and development. This can negatively impact their future.
The ISU Department of Dental Hygiene, the ISU Dental Residency Program, and the Southeastern Idaho Public Health (SIPH) District host the event. The dental hygiene students, faculty and the ISU dental residents do all preventative dental services provided at the ISU Dental Hygiene Clinic.
If a child has decay and requires further treatment, 30 dentists in the community will see the child in their offices and provide all the restorative care. This year ISU physician assistant students will be collaborating up with the dental hygiene students, in attempt to partner the two disciplines and provide the students with an interprofessional learning opportunity.
To call for an appointment and see if your child qualifies, call Dana Solomon at SIPH at (208) 239-5256.