DENISON, TX - An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. That's the idea at the annual Dentistry from the Heart event in Denison. KXII talked to people waiting in line who say it's a blessing to have such an important service provided for free.
A little bluegrass to go along with free smiles. Residents waited patiently in the parking lot for their turn to get free dental work done at Lake Texoma Dental Care.
"We just have a great time doing it," said Dr. Steve McAnaney, Lake Texoma Dental Care." And the patients that come, they really appreciate what we do for them."
This is the fifth year that Dr. McAnaney and a group of volunteers have put on Dentistry from the Heart providing free cleanings and extractions for people who can't afford to pay for dental care.
"I mean in my daily practice and every day week and month we just see people come in that just can't afford it or don't have insurance or whatever the case is," Dr. McAnaney said.
People like Grayson College student Racheal Cravens who was there to get her back tooth pulled.
"I'm very thankful that I am before it actually gets really bad to where I can't get it taken care of," said Cravens.
McAnaney says they've helped over a thousand people in the last 5 years, and although it costs his practice money, he says he doesn't mind because dental problems can lead to bigger problems down the road.
"There's clear science proof that, medical proof, that mouth infections cause a lot of other problems in your body," he said. "Heart disease, diabetes, so we at least help them a little bit to eliminate some of that problem in their mouth."
Dentistry from the Heart is a national non-profit organization. To date they've helped 5,000 patients and provided over $1 million in dental care. In Denison.