Published DateLACONIA — Today Lakes Region dentists will visit Laconia Middle School to screen children from low-income families for free dental services.
Participating dentists include Dr. Kristine Blackwelder, Dr. Derek Blackwelder, Dr. Darren Boles, Dr. Everett Johnson, Dr. Glenda Reynolds, Dr. Lisa Singh and Dr. Matthew Smith.
On Friday, February 8, these volunteer dentists will provide free treatment, exams cleanings, sealants and x-rays for the children found to be in need of further care.
The effort is part of the annual "Give Kids a Smile" campaign. The New Hampshire Dental Society and the Northeast Delta Dental Foundation support this initiative in our state.
"As doctors, dentists know that good oral care is just one component necessary for good health. Severe tooth decay and toothaches can impact children's overall well-being, from eating and sleeping to paying attention in school," says Dr. Melissa Kennell, who practices at Children's Dentistry of the Lakes Region. "This program gives dentists the chance to do more and help New Hampshire children have healthier mouths."
February is National Children's Dental Health Month and other local initiatives include Dr. Kennell, Matthew Smith and the dental team at Children's Dentistry of the Lakes Region presenting a "Smile School" educational program in local schools. In Wolfeboro, Dr. Robert Maguire will provide educational visits to two local preschools and a daycare center.
Since the foundation of Give Kids a Smile in 2003, more than 4.5 million children have received oral care from dental providers nationwide. This program, supported by the American Dental Association (ADA), is also part of National Children's Dental Health Month.
According to the ADA, 16 million children have tooth decay. And, it is almost completely preventable through regular dental visits, brushing, flossing and access to fluoride.
The New Hampshire Dental Society is the professional association of dentists in New Hampshire. With more than 800 members, the association represents more than 84 percent of the practicing dentists in the state.