Undoubtedly, oral health is connected to overall health and oral health care is a critical component for maintaining good oral health.  Numerous recent scientific studies have connected dental disease to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, pneumonia, and compromised immunity to other life-threatening illnesses. Scientific research shows that if older adults can maintain good oral health, they add to the quality and even quantity of their lives. Skyrocketing health care costs are causing significant numbers of older Americans to postpone or discontinue regular professional dental care in order to save money for housing, food, and other health care needs.  We are in the process of applying for a Smiles Partner Grant from Washington Dental Hygienists’ Association. Smiles for Life was recognized as number nine in the top 25 innovative and preventive oral health programs in the United States by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. There are now over 40 Smiles for Life programs throughout Washington State in senior and community centers. This grant will help fund my community based oral health program for older adults. The purpose of these programs is to make dental cleanings and other preventive dental care as convenient and affordable to seniors as possible. Free educational classes and oral health screenings are also provided in some of the programs. A 2009 Department of Health review of the programs showed that seniors do need, use, and are very happy with these new programs. The costs for dental cleanings and other preventive dental services in these programs average between 25 and 40% less than in private dental offices, and discounts and payment plans are often available. The preventive services are provided in the senior or community centers, and hygienists refer seniors in need of dental treatment to dentists and denturists in each community who have agreed to fix “one tooth at a time” if necessary, and accept payments.  To date, Smiles for Life has provided dental services to over 4,000 individuals. It is my goal to bring this much needed access program to our community.  Today, we ask for your support with a written letter that expresses your interest in establishing one of these vital programs in our area. We need a community center/senior center to agree to have me provide services at their facility. We are committed in this charge to bring access to oral care to our community, and the Smiles Partners Grant from Washington State Dental Hygienists’ Association (www.wsdha.com), will advance this process. Let’s make a difference in the lives of those who gave us life. Thank you for supporting this wonderful cause. Please take a moment to express your desire for this service.  LET US HEAR FROM YOU ON ESTABLISHING  A SMILES FOR LIFE SENIOR CENTER DENTAL ACCESS PROGRAM
WHERE TO TURN
What do you think? What do you think?
Although innovations continue to improve dentistry and oral care has been at the forefront, this issue demonstrates the challenges ahead to improve the state of oral health around the world and the important role dental hygienists have as an established workforce. Thankfully, Washington State is one of the 39 states that allow dental hygienists to initiate care in alternative settings without the presence of a dentist (ADHA, 2016) and the ADHP demonstrates this successful model (1).

Help your community smile and help me make a difference

in the lives of seniors

Total Health Hygiene, PLLC
©

Help your community smile

and help me make a difference

in the lives of seniors

Although innovations continue to improve dentistry and oral care has been at the forefront, this issue demonstrates the challenges ahead to improve the state of oral health around the world and the important role dental hygienists have as an established workforce. Thankfully, Washington State is one of the 39 states that allow dental hygienists to initiate care in alternative settings without the presence of a dentist (ADHA, 2016) and the ADHP demonstrates this successful model (1).

Undoubtedly, oral health is connected to

overall health and oral health care is a critical

component for maintaining good oral health. 

Numerous recent scientific studies have connected

dental disease to heart disease, stroke, diabetes,

pneumonia, and compromised immunity to other

life-threatening illnesses. Scientific research shows

that if older adults can maintain good oral health,

they add to the quality and even quantity of their

lives. Skyrocketing health care costs are causing

significant numbers of older Americans to postpone

or discontinue regular professional dental care in

order to save money for housing, food, and other

health care needs.

I am in the process of applying for a Smiles

Partner Grant from Washington Dental Hygienists’

Association. Smiles for Life was recognized as

number nine in the top 25 innovative and

preventive oral health programs in the United States

by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. There are

now over 40 Smiles for Life programs throughout

Washington State in senior and community centers.

This grant will help fund my community based oral

health program for older adults.

The purpose of these programs is to make

dental cleanings and other preventive dental care

as convenient and affordable to seniors as possible.

Free educational classes and oral health screenings

are also provided in some of the programs. A 2009

Department of Health review of the programs

showed that seniors do need, use, and are very

happy with these new programs. The costs for

dental cleanings and other preventive dental

services in these programs average between 25 and

40% less than in private dental offices, and

discounts and payment plans are often available.

The preventive services are provided in the senior or

community centers, and hygienists refer seniors in

need of dental treatment to dentists and denturists

in each community who have agreed to fix “one

tooth at a time” if necessary, and accept payments.

To date, Smiles for Life has provided dental

services to over 4,000 individuals. It is my goal to

bring this much needed access program to our

community.  Today, I ask for your support with a

written letter that expresses your interest in

facilitating the establishment of this vital program

for your seniors. I am committed in this charge to

bring access to oral care to our community, and the

Smiles Partners Grant from Washington State

Dental Hygienists’ Association (www.wsdha.com),

will advance this process.

What do you think? What do you think?
WHERE TO TURN