Thursday, July 18, 2024

Belize Mission Dental Project returns to San Pedro Town


A team of dental specialists and volunteers are in Belize providing free dental services. The Belize Mission Project is a yearly program from the United States of America (USA) that has been coming to the country for the past 27 years. The team of American dental caregivers arrived in San Pedro Town on Friday, October 19th and began their services on Monday, October 22nd. They plan to offerer dental work to patients at the San Pedro Lions Den on Barrier Drive through Friday, November 2nd.
In San Pedro Town, the group is comprised of dentists, physicians, volunteers, laboratory technicians, and other medical professionals. While spearheaded by Dr. Frank Whipps, the island group is led by Gordon Gates. He spoke to The San Pedro Sun about their activities on the island. “We are providing all types of services, including cavity fillings, cleanings, restorative dentistry, partial dentistry and complete dentures as well,” he said. “We also have clinics taking place in areas of the country like Dangriga Town and Corozal Town.” Gates says they are happy to be back in Belize providing their services to the people who take advantage of it.
The San Pedro Sun spoke to a patient, who stated that she and her family have been benefiting from the Belize Mission Project for many years. “Every year they come here on the island, my family and I always come do our dental check-ups. At times we only needed cleaning, but sometimes we get other services like the cavity fillings,” said the resident.
Island residents requiring dental care can visit the free dental clinic at the San Pedro Lions Den from 8AM to 5PM daily. It is advisable to ensure that you submit your name to the Belizean volunteers who will issue a ticket number to access dental assistance. The public is again reminded that the clinics are free of cost. Islanders are encouraged to brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and clean between teeth daily with floss or interdental cleaner. Residents are also encouraged to eat nutritious and balanced meals and limit snacking on sugar-heavy foods and sodas. In between clinics, residents should check with a dentist about the use of supplemental fluoride, which strengthens your teeth, and about use of dental sealants (a plastic protective coating) applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth (where decay often starts) to protect them from decay, and they should visit a dentist regularly for professional cleanings and oral examination.

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