UMN students offer free dental care to underserved children

Friday, February 3, 2017

This Saturday, February 4th, nearly 300 students and faculty in the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry will provide free dental care for children who have difficulty accessing dental services. In 2016, more than 150 children received care, and event organizers expect a similar turnout this year.

“Many children have been unable to access dental services essential to their overall health and wellbeing,” said Karin Englund, a third-year dental student and co-chair for Give Kids a Smile Day. “The 13th annual School of Dentistry Give Kids a Smile Day is aiming to provide this much-needed care to these children while connecting them and their families with a dental home for ongoing oral health care needs."

Dentistry, dental therapy and dental hygiene students will provide a full range of dental care including routine cleanings and x-rays, as well as more complex procedures including cavity fillings and simple tooth extractions, under the supervision of volunteer faculty dentists and clinicians.

WHAT: As one of the largest Give Kids a Smile Day clinics in the state, the University of Minnesota space holds 28 dental chairs in an open room, offering sweeping camera shots. Various volunteers will also be available for interviews.

WHEN: Saturday, February 4
Media availability from 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

WHERE: 6th Floor, Moos Tower
515 Delaware Street, S.E., Minneapolis 55455
Parking available in the Washington Avenue parking ramp. Moos Tower is also off the East Bank Green Line LRT Station

BACKGROUND: Held each February, Give Kids a Smile Day provides free oral health education, screening, and treatment services to children from low-income families across the country. The University of Minnesota is one of a few Minnesota clinics to participate in Give Kids a Smile Day on Saturday. Many other clinics participate on Friday.