Alaskan Patients to Get Free Dental Care
The Alaska Mission of Mercy held a two day dental clinic last week in Anchorage, Alaska. A lot of people lined up to recent free dental care. Most of them can’t afford regular visits to the dentist and the free dental services were their only option.
Dentists David Nielson and Julie Robinson organized the Alaska Mission of Mercy through the help of volunteers. Their goal is to offer free services for 2,000 adults and children who can’t afford dental care. More than 240 volunteer dentists cleaned, pulled, and filled teeth last Friday and Saturday. They also provided root canals and X-rays. They had limited number of temporary retainers and flippers to replace lost teeth. The service was in a first come, first serve basis and the free clinics opened 6 am and lasted for 12 hours.
The volunteer dentists of the Alaska Mission of Mercy don’t provide cosmetic dentistry, braces. Or full dentures. They can’t also take care of all the dental needs of a single patient in order to relieve as much pain for more patients. Most of the patients are in pain and suffering and this is why they don’t take anyone who is out of line.
Some of the patients haven’t been to the dentist for a long time. Most of them are jobless and were already in line since Thursday afternoon. While a lot of them were from Anchorage, there were people from other places such as Fairbanks, Ketchikan, and Tok.
People were prepared to stay in line overnight. They wore mittens and scarves, and brought blankets. It was a festive mood as people shared their drinks and snacks. Some people can’t remember the last time they visited the dentist. Common treatments required by the patients were root canal, teeth cleaning, extractions, and fillings. A lot of people were in pain for a long time.
Photo by Senior Airman Christopher Griffin [Public domain], undefined