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Free dental care for kids coming to SIU school


BELOW: SIU School of Dental Medicine student Kyle Horcher with Sophia and Charlie St. Peters at the 2014 Give Kids a Smile Day.

From Illinois Business Journal news services

ALTON – Southern Illinois University’s School of Dental Medicine is urging parents of qualified children between the ages of 3 and 13 to bring their children to this year’s Give Kids A Smile Day from 7:30 a.m. to noon, Monday, Oct. 12, at the school’s main clinic in building 263, 2800 College Ave. in Alton.

siuefreedentalThe event offers free comprehensive dental care, including examinations, X-rays, cleanings, fluoride treatments, fillings and extractions. All services will be provided by SIU School of Dental Medicine faculty, students and staff, members of the Madison and St. Clair district dental societies, Lewis and Clark Community College dental assisting and dental hygiene faculty and students, and faculty and students from the Missouri College of Assisting. Professionals and volunteers from the community also will participate.

Children qualified to participate in the event are those eligible for free and reduced-priced meal programs.

“We are once again prepared to treat approximately 300 children and hope that the children needing urgent dental care will be able to come and receive treatment,” said Dr. Poonam Jain, professor in the SIU School of Dental Medicine and director of community dentistry. “Each child must be accompanied by a parent or guardian in order to be treated. Apart from dental treatment, fun educational activities and snacks will be available for all children.”

Give Kids A Smile Day is a national event sponsored by the American Dental Association to provide free dental treatment for underserved children.

In Alton, the one-day event allows an average of more than 200 children to receive care from dental professionals each year. The volunteer dentists and staff offer an annual average of more than $50,000 in preventive, restorative and surgical treatment for the children who participate.

Fun activities for children will take place throughout the event.

For more information, contact Sherie Gottlob from the School of Dental Medicine, (618) 474-7200, or While pre-registration is preferred, it is not required. Walk-ins are welcome between 7.30 a.m. to noon.

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