Free Pediatric Dental Clinic Provides Care for Arlington ISD Students in Need

Dental Health Arlington SMILES team treated 40 students in need of dental care

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The waiting room was full and so were the patient rooms at Dental Health Arlington on Friday.

"We're going to get a look at your teeth here, OK?" Dr. John Avila said to a young patient. "Alright honey, let's get you to tilt your head up a big for me."

Avila was one of five dentists, two hygienists, several UT Arlington pre-dental students, and Dental Health Arlington staff who volunteered their time and services for the Dental Health Arlington SMILES free clinic, which is part of the Give Kids a Smile program.

"Maybe their parents are working too hard, not making ends meet," Avila said. "And so this is just a way to provide dental services for kids."

From teeth cleanings to filings, x-rays, and extractions, everything was free for the 40 Arlington ISD students identified in need of dental care.

"I know I do this every day, but this is kind of one of those special moments, special days," hygienist Janet Villalobos said. "I get to set aside some time and help."

About $20,000 worth of dental care was donated during the free clinic.

"Everyone that works here just loves to help people," Avila said. "So to give back and to help someone that just desperately needs treatment, it's rewarding."

Dental Health Arlington has held the free pediatric clinic for the last 25 years.

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