As a dentist, you are a caring and compassionate professional. You care for your patients, your team members, and your colleagues. You probably worry about people from time to time, such as a pediatric patient going through tough times at home or a staff member whose spouse is in ill health. You probably also care a great deal about your community, but you might not know how best to show it. Here are 5 easy ways to give back to your community.
Donate to Charity
There are numerous dental charities, each with a slightly different focus. Oral Health America focuses on targeted oral health campaigns. The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry Charitable Foundation (AACDCF) rebuilds the smiles of adults who have survived domestic violence. Healthy Smiles Healthy Children provides pediatric dental care to children whose families cannot afford it. Research these and other dental charities, and then make a donation to the one that resonates the most with you.
Conduct a Free Community Dental Day
Whether you hook up with an organization such as Dentistry from the Heart or go it alone, a free community dental day is a wonderful way to directly impact lower-income people in your local area. Decide in advance which services you will offer, such as cleanings, fillings, and oral cancer screenings, and prepare for a crowd. You might also consider making it a day of fun with giveaways, lunch, and other exciting events.
Host a Food Drive
Food pantries are always in need of donations. Consider partnering with a local food bank to collect donations at your office. You can increase participation by giving a small discount or other reward to patients who bring in nonperishable foods.
Help set up local children for a lifetime of excellent oral health by taking your message into the local schools. Prepare a short, kid-friendly talk on the basics of dental anatomy and oral hygiene, along with the role of a good diet in maintaining oral health. Bring some small, fun giveaways such as toothbrushes and stickers, as well as refrigerator magnets or other branded items.
Take a Mission Trip
There are numerous organisations, both religiously affiliated and secular, that provide health care including dentistry in remote regions. Seek out a group that fits your practice’s vision, and then take your skills to a foreign country for a few days.
Of course, these are just a few ways to give back. Don’t forget to tap into your own personal interests, as well as those of your team members. You might choose to build sets for (or even star in!) a play at the local community theater, donate time or money to a local homeless shelter, or sponsor a kids’ baseball team. Whatever you choose, make sure it feels authentic to you and fits with your practice’s mission, vision, and values.
Ready to Get Started?
If you are interested in learning how to take your dental practice to the next level, please contact Ascent Dental Solutions today at 413-224-2659 to learn how Dr. Coughlin can help.