Over 200 Nebraska children to receive much-needed dental care
The 37th annual Children’s Dental Day on March 6 at the college in Lincoln. Children’s Dental Day is a statewide outreach program that has a significant impact on the oral health of children in Nebraska.
During the event, UNMC dental and dental hygiene students, postgraduate dental residents, faculty and staff will provide free dental care to over 200 low-income and underserved children from communities across Nebraska. The children will receive dental cleanings, restorations, extractions and other essential dental care, as well as education on the importance of oral health.
“For some of these children, this will be their first visit to a dentist. Left untreated, oral health conditions can have serious consequences, including needless pain and suffering, difficulty chewing, difficulty speaking and lost days in school,” said Jillian Wallen, B.D.S., assistant dean for extramural activities and outreach for the UNMC College of Dentistry. “By providing the dental care these children need, the College of Dentistry continues to play a critical role in improving oral health throughout Nebraska.”
Started in 2001, the UNMC College of Dentistry has held 36 Children’s Dental Days in Lincoln and western Nebraska, treating more than 6,000 children and providing more than $3 million in dental services to low-income and underserved children. The event is part of the American Dental Association’s oral health care program for underserved children, Give Kids A Smile.
This year, the children are coming from Columbus, Crete, Fremont, Grand Island, Hastings, Lexington, Lincoln and Omaha. They have been identified and prescreened by volunteers in their communities, including College of Dentistry alumni. Many of these volunteers will attend the event with the children to provide emotional support. Additionally, students from the UNMC College of Nursing will provide wellness checks and students from other local colleges will provide clinical assistance and translation services.