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Improving children’s dental health, knowledge

With 80 percent of dental problems found in 20 percent of the population, getting the word out to Western New York's underserved population has become a major mission of the School of Dental Medicine.

“It helps you realize your responsibility to the community to help those who are underserved and may not have the opportunities that other populations have.” Amy Stone,
Fourth-year student, School of Dental Medicines

To that end, UB's 400 dental students take part in several community-service programs run through the dental school.

Along with faculty and dental residents, they provide care annually to approximately 18,000 patients, many of whom have no insurance, in UB's on-site dental clinics. They also educate the community’s children about the importance of maintaining good oral health through a slate of year-round, public-service programs.

The school's largest community outreach effort takes place in February—National Children's Dental Health Month—on Smile Education Day when dental students visit more than 30,000 third- and fifth-graders throughout Western New York to promote good oral health.

On “Give Kids a Smile Day,” also held in February, UB dental students, faculty and staff join with other volunteers to provide free treatment at the school to more than 700 children from across Western New York who don’t have access to dental care.

Through “My Dentist, My Friend,” dental students work year-round with children in Head Start programs.

DISCOVER MORE

“The Months Before the Day”
It takes a year to make what looks like a carnival work as an efficient treatment machine.

“Give Kids a Smile Day”
UB School of Dental Medicine provides hundreds of children ages 1-18 with free dental treatment.

Spire Hall on UB's South CampusSchool of Dental Medicine