According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly one in four children under the age of five already has cavities.
To fill this need, Eastern Gateway Community College has spent the last 15 years giving kids a healthier smile for free.
“There are a lot of patients, especially children, that fall through the cracks and don’t have the luxury of dental treatment. This is an avenue where at least one time a year they can go to the dentist and get things taken care of so we can persevere their teeth for their permanent teeth coming in,” said Tammy Graham, EGCC Director of Dental Assisting Program.
On Wednesday and Thursday, kids received a cleaning exam, x-rays and fluoride treatments free of charge.
So not not a only did they leave with a smile on their face, but a much healthier and brighter one.
“We thought it was great. It’s wonderful, helps out the community and helps people get their kids’ dental taken care of,” said Lisa Benos, Steubenville mother.
Give Kids a Smile serves kids ages 3 to 12 years old, who may not be able to receive dental care due to lack of money or health insurance.
But Graham said the event would be nothing without the volunteers who keep the program running year after year.
“We would not be able to do this without the volunteers that come here every year to volunteer for Give Kids A Smile. They fill the need for children that need dental care. We’re just excited we can do it,” Graham said.
Graham added they’re always looking for more dental assistants and general dentists to help volunteer.
If you’re interested, you can contact EGCC on their website.