JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas --
Both 59th Medical Wing dental clinics on Joint Base San Antonio will provide free dental services for uninsured military children during “Give Kids A Smile Day” events in February.
Offering children a free dental exam and cleaning, “the events are part of the American Dental Association’s Give Kids a Smile Program, a nationwide initiative intended to provide free, desperately-needed dental services to children,” said Lt. Col. (Dr.) Stephen Gasparovich, a pediatric dentist with the 359th Medical Group.
“Last year, more than 46,000 dental team members nationwide participated,” he said.
• The Randolph Dental Clinic event is Feb. 10 from 7:30 to 11:30 a.m. The event is open to 1- to 13-year-old children of active-duty and retired military; call the clinic at 210-652-1846 to sign up.
• The Dunn Dental Clinic event at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland is Feb. 24 from 7-11 a.m. The event is open to children, 6 months to 17 years old, who are dependents of active duty, retirees, Reservists or guard members on active-duty orders, and children of Department of Defense and Air Force civilian employees. To sign up, visit www.SignUpGenius.com/go/70A0F45A9A82FA20-give.
Nearly one in four children, ages 2 to 11, has untreated cavities in their baby teeth, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Additionally, the National Institutes of Health reports that 80 percent of tooth decay is found in just 25 percent of children, primarily from low-income families.
“This event will raise awareness of the epidemic of untreated dental disease occurring here and across the country and raise awareness of the need to build local and public partnerships to increase access to oral health care to solve this crisis,” Gasparovich said.
Space is limited; event organizers encourage parents to sign up early.