Adults who need dental care but can't afford to pay for it will have plenty to smile about Friday when free fillings, cleanings and extractions are offered at a Fort Worth dentist's office.
The first 100 people to show up will be treated at no cost at Fort Worth Dental, 4620 Citylake Blvd. The event is part of a national effort by Dentistry From The Heart, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing free dental care to those in need. Every year dentists donate time and resources to host the event.
Dr. Arthur Mund, who is hosting the event with his son, Dr. Justin Mund, and Dr. Terry Zang, said he's not sure how many people will be lined up when then doors open at 7:30 a.m. or what kind of services they'll need.
"We're just going to try to be ready for them," he said. "And we'll stay as long as it takes to get 100 people taken care of."
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With 12 treatment rooms, three dentists and two hygienists, Mund said he hopes to move people in and out relatively quickly.
Last month, when Dr. Tim Huckabee in Southlake hosted a free day of dentistry, patients started lining up at 1 a.m., and by the end of the day about 120 people had been treated. Huckabee has been offering a free day of dental care since 2009, when he was the first local dentist to participate in the event.
Dentistry From The Heart expects to help about 30,000 patients this year through more than 250 events nationwide. Forty-five Texas dental practices are in the Dentistry From The Heart network, according to an organization representative.
The organization was founded in 2001 by a Florida dentist who wanted to give back to the community and address the growing number of people without dental insurance. Over the last decade, more than $9 million in free dental care has been donated, and more than 50,000 patients have been helped.
Because of the economy, more people can't afford dental care, Mund said. Through this event, Mund said he hopes to give people a renewed reason to smile again.
This article includes material from the Star-Telegram archives.
Jan Jarvis, 817-390-7664