Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Annual Give Kids a Smile Day Slated for Saturday

Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Annual Give Kids a Smile Day Slated for Saturday

Article excerpt

To promote dental health, for the 15th year, the Kanawha Valley Dental Society will sponsor the annual Give Kids a Smile event this weekend. The free program, open to eligible families who reside throughout the Kanawha Valley, will take place at the KVDS offices at 3520 Teays Valley Road in Hurricane, from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 11.

"It's a program to raise oral health awareness in a fun and educational atmosphere, and to help provide dental care for kids in the Kanawha Valley, said Amy Isble, a dentist with the Kanawha County Schools system who will be participating.

Along with providing dental services at no expense, the event will include an area for craft and education stations for children. The stations will include: Proper Brushing, Sports Safety, Local Dental Resource Information, Nutrition for Healthy Teeth. Face painting, craft making and giveaways will be part of the day, as well.

Special guests expected to appear on Saturday include Batman and storybook and movie royalty from Putnam Princess Parties.

Young patients will also receive goody bags with dental-care items and information to maintain good dental hygiene practices.

This is Amy Governor's second year working with the program. She is with the Ghareeb Dental Group. "For some of these children, this is the only time they see a dentist all year, she said. "All kids get an exam and a cleaning. We also do some fillings and extractions of baby teeth. But for any serious problems, we give them a referral.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, nearly one in four children ages 2 to 11 has untreated cavities in his or her teeth. Additionally, many children enrolled in Medicaid receive no dental services throughout the year.

Give Kids A Smile is conducted yearly by area dentists and their professional staff members to:

" Provide free, easily accessible dental services to qualifying individuals.

" Raise awareness of the epidemic of untreated dental disease occurring locally and nationally and create local public and private partnerships to increase access to oral health care to solve this crisis.

The American Dental Association began the Give Kids a Smile program in 2003 as a way for dentists to join with others in the community to provide dental services to underserved children. …

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