“Give Kids A Smile!” is the annual centerpiece of National Children’s Dental Health Month. On the first Friday in February, the nation’s dentists will provide free oral health care services to low-income children across the country. In addition to helping children in need, “Give Kids A Smile! highlights for policymakers the ongoing challenges that disadvantaged children face in accessing dental care.
With the leadership of the North Carolina Dental Society, thousands of dentists, dental hygienists, dental assistants, dental office staff, dental students, members of the public health community, and other volunteers work together to make “Give Kids A Smile!” a success each year. North Carolina has been part of GKAS since it began in 2003, and we take great pride in having helped thousands of children in our State overcome the pain and suffering that often occurs with a lack of regular dental care. Many of these children are unable to eat or sleep properly, are not able to pay attention in school, and may risk other, even more serious health problems, as a result of poor oral health.
Volunteers provide free care to children across the State — whether it be dental treatment, prevention, and/or educational programs. In each county, local teams plan oral health programs specifically designed to fit the needs of the community. The teams identify sites and schedule volunteers to provide care for children who have usually been identified and pre-screened by public schools and county health departments. While specific GKAS activities vary from county to county, the importance of oral health care prevention and treatment is the focus of the day.
The North Carolina Dental Society invites you to join with us and make a difference for the children whose need is so great. To find out how you can help, contact Maura Laurin at NCDS, (919) 234-4021 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Together, we can “Give Kids A Smile!”