Des Plaines dentists offer free exams
on Give Kids a Smile Day
Dozens of area children will receive a free dental exam, cleaning, fluoride treatment and X-rays as part of Give Kids a Smile (GKAS) Day on Feb. 2 in the office of Des Plaines dentists Harold O. Wyckoff Jr., D.D.S., and James B. McCool, D.D.S.
The office, at 1355 Golf Road, is marking its sixth year of participation in the national program of the American Dental Association. Each year the office staff blocks out a day to treat 25 to 30 children, most of them 6 years of age and older. Children also take home a "goody bag" of basic dental supplies.
The campaign aims to build awareness of the importance of access to dental care for underserved families. Nearly 1 in 4 children, ages 2 to 11 years old, have untreated cavities. "There's a definite need for treating underserved patients," said Dr. Wyckoff. "Last year, the level of decay in children was surprising."
Patient families are provided with a listing of clinics where low-cost care is provided. However, a couple of the most severe cases are treated in the office.
Local agencies assisting with enrollment in GKAS have included the Des Plaines Self-Help Closet and Food Pantry, School District 62, CEDA Northwest, Maine Township.