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  • Dave Kinzer

Free Dental Care Opportunity

One kind of physical pain I’ve never been able to tolerate very well is a toothache. I’ve experienced shoulder tendonitis, terrible backaches, even a broken toe and a cracked rib, and I’d say that none of those ailments bothered me as much as a persistent toothache would.

I won’t hesitate to call my dentist if I suspect I have a cavity.

Unfortunately, once you get past a basic cleaning or fluoride treatment, dental care can be pretty expensive. I remember my first year out of college, I had a couple cavities. The total bill to take care of them was over a thousand dollars. I had the money to pay the bill, but just barely.

If you know you need to have some dental work done, but have been avoiding it because you can’t afford the cost, you might soon be able to get it taken care of for a great price: How does “free” sound?

Advanced Dental Care of Springfield, located at 4701 W. Wabash Ave., will host its annual Free Dental Day on Friday, May 7th. It started offering a Free Dental Day in 2010, and has run it every year except 2020, when it was canceled due to the pandemic. Since 2010, over 1000 patients have received more than $400,000 worth of dental care.

A dental office helping people for free? Why would it do that?

I asked Dr. VanderMolen of Advanced Dental Care exactly that. He said, “Our mission is to help as many people in our community as we can to have healthy, comfortable and confident smiles. This Free Dental Day is a special day in our work and in our mission. As a matter of fact, it’s our favorite day of the year. So many missions focus on far-away places, but there’s so much we can do in our own “backyard. “ - the people of the greater Springfield community.”

I encourage you to share this information with anyone you know who is avoiding a trip to the dentist due to financial struggles or because they don’t have dental insurance.

And if you do have dental insurance and are doing just fine financially, I encourage you to pass up this opportunity. Everyone likes free stuff, but in this case, let’s step aside and let the people who really need this get some free dental care.

You do have to meet a couple requirements to participate, though. You need to be 18 years old or older, and you must not be pregnant. You do not need dental insurance.

Registration starts April 19th, and is required. Call 217-207-0632 to register. Participants will get to choose to have a filling, extraction, or cleaning done for no charge.

Normally, there are 100 spots available. Because of precautions they have to take related to COVID-19, there will only be 78 spots available this year.

Kudos to Advanced Dental Care for giving up hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue to help people in the Springfield community.

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