Aspen Dental Volunteers Provide Free Dental Care to Hundreds in Jamaica

Aspen: Aspen Dental Jobs

Date:  August 13, 2018 

Explore how nine dentists, one hygienist and one lab technician made a life-changing impact for hundreds of families during an overseas outreach trip to Jamaica.

 

Eleven volunteers, connected through Aspen Dental, traveled to Montego Bay, Jamaica from July 21-28 to donate their time and dental skills to treat hundreds of local adults and children in desperate need of dental care. Together, the team of nine dentists, one hygienist and one lab technician were able to treat 695 patients, providing 519 restorative fillings, 98 preventative sealants, 180 fluoride varnishes, crafting 67 dentures and extracting 604 teeth so people were immediately out of pain and back on the road to oral health.

“Participating in an international volunteer trip was always something I wanted to do,” said dentist and Aspen Dental Practice Owner Dr. Hassan Ismail. “This Jamaica opportunity was just what I was waiting for. I am proud to be a part of the Aspen Dental community and am grateful for the experience.” 

The Aspen Dental team worked with the Jamaica Dental Mission, which helped to ensure as many patients as possible were treated during the weeklong visit. Dr. Dwight McLeod, Founder and Director of the Jamaica Dental Mission, said of the relationship, “Thanks to the collaborative efforts of the volunteers, we continue to make significant progress in educating patients, controlling diseases, and improving the overall systemic health of patients.”

The team worked in a clinic located in Kew Park, a mountainous region in Jamaica that’s very isolated from the well-known tourist areas.  While the clinic had electricity and donated dental chairs, the team still had to improvise and overcome obstacles such as extreme heat and humidity, limited resources and equipment, and accommodating the high demand from local patients.

On average, the team worked about 12 hours each day in 90 degree heat and oppressive humidity. But for every challenge there was a solution. When the acrylic and plaster separator, used to make denture models, got lost in customs, the team improvised with shampoo and conditioner to separate the denture wax models. The team relied on head lamps, loops and flashlights to work when there was minimal chairside light options. While some of the stations had suction capabilities, some did not, so the team used dental cups and had patients swoosh and spit throughout their treatment.

 

 

“Despite unfamiliar conditions and obstacles, the team really came together to always find a solution so we could provide more access to comprehensive care for these patients,” said Dr. Anita Imadomwanyi, team leader and Director of Charitable Giving for Aspen Dental.

Dr. Imadomwanyi will be leading another team of Aspen Dental volunteers on an overseas outreach trip to Antigua, Guatemala from November 2-10. The team will be partnering with Global Dental Relief and will be exclusively providing dentistry services to children. For more information about Aspen Dental’s outreach initiatives, visit HealthyMouthMovement.com.

“Despite unfamiliar conditions and obstacles, the team really came together to always find a solution so we could provide more access to comprehensive care for these patients,” said Dr. Anita Imadomwanyi, team leader and Director of Charitable Giving for Aspen Dental.