Mobile Dental Clinic Helps Keep Detroit Children’s Teeth Healthy
Across the country, lack of childhood dental care remains a pervasive issue. In fact, studies show that children nationwide lose a stunning 51 million hours of school annually due to untreated dental problems.
To give Detroit children better access to the dental care they need, a customized bus is now traveling across the area, providing comprehensive dental services to underprivileged kids.
According to Crain’s Detroit Business, the University of Detroit Mercy (UDM)’s new dental coach is now traveling across Wayne County, providing dental care and education to children at schools across the county.
The mobile dental clinic has four portable treatment chairs for patients, X-ray equipment, a sterilization unit and a digital imaging system. UDM dental students and faculty will administer treatments to children, which will include preventive exams, cleanings, X-rays, sealants, restorative work, tooth extractions, emergency services and more.
The bus will make its first stop at Noble Elementary-Middle School in Detroit, where it will remain for two weeks. During this time, more than 50 children are expected to be treated at this school alone.
When 99.7% — virtually all — of Americans agree that one’s smile is one of the most important social assets one can have, maintaining a healthy, beautiful set of teeth from childhood to adulthood is more essential than ever. Additionally, children with healthy teeth are less likely to miss school, improving their educational experience. That’s why UDM’s mobile clinic is so important, said Mert Aksu, the UDM dental school’s dean.
“Not only will this mobile unit provide a unique experience for University of Detroit Mercy dental students, it also will address the access-to-care issue in the city of Detroit by facilitating dental treatment to a population that likely would not otherwise receive it,” Aksu said.
By the end of the school year, the mobile clinic will have provided dental care to approximately 1,600 children.