On August 26, 2016, Cambridge Family Dentistry teamed up with DSG Pearce Turk Dental lab to give back to the men and women who have served our country by providing free dental implants to five local veterans. Though the staff at Cambridge honor veterans every Friday by wearing red, they wanted to do something more for the veterans whose dental care is not covered by the VA.
News of the free service first aired on KAKE at the beginning of July. The response was amazing! What started out as a plan to provide five free patient cases grew to eleven, with an even greater waiting list created for the next time they might offer this opportunity again. Dr. Dean Wright, founder of Cambridge Family Dentistry, has performed over 15,000 implant procedures since 1976 – you could say he’s a bit of an implant expert! Providing implants was naturally the first thing Dr. Wright thought of when the team decided they wanted to honor local veterans.
Working Together to Create a Lasting Impact for Veterans
The Cambridge doctors, assistants and lab employees from Pearce Turk all came together to donate their time and services, and the feedback from the first five veterans was very positive.
“I truly couldn’t believe how quick and easy it was,” said Clifford Chastain, who served in Vietnam and flew 1700 hours of combat flight time. A little apprehensive at first, Chastain said he felt no pain during the procedure and was surprised that the whole process was completed with a two-hour visit in the morning and a fitting in the afternoon. “It’s changed my life,” he added, extremely grateful for the work that Cambridge and Pearce Turk lab provided free of charge.
Another recipient, Patrick Heim, agreed that the experience was very different from what he expected. “They have the procedure down to such a smooth flowing operation.” After expressing how incredible the whole experience was, Heim added, “I’m excited about being able to eat apples again!”
“The way the Cambridge folks work together was just amazing,” commented another recipient, Walter Holland. He said that receiving the implants was an incredible experience for him. “Dr. Wright and Dr. Polk took a lot of time to explain things to me and to make sure I was comfortable,” he said, adding, “I couldn’t be happier. The implants feel amazing!”
Before he had the implant, recipient John Harper had a lot of problems with his teeth and eating. He too was impressed that the procedure was so quick and easy. “I seriously felt nothing. No pain at all. I just couldn’t believe it!”
Dennis Doyle – Sales Manager at Pearce Turk Dental
Pearce Turk Dental lab was excited to be a part of the day, donating the implants and lab work for free. “It was just so great to be a part of this and be able to give back in such a rewarding way,” said Dennis Doyle, sales manager at Pearce Turk Dental.
Tony Phillips – General Manager at Pearce Turk Dental
General manager Tony Phillips agreed. “We contribute to worthwhile causes in other ways but it was very rewarding to actually see the smiles and the impact it made on actual veterans lives.”
What are Mini Dental Implants?
The mini dental implant is an innovative procedure, first pioneered by our own Dr. Dean Wright, founder of Cambridge Family Dentistry. Mini dental implants are half the diameter of traditional implants and require less bone mass to implant, making them a great option for individuals with bone atrophy.
Utilizing the latest in dentistry technology, the mini implant procedure anchors a bio-compatible titanium implant into the bones of the jaw, essentially mimicking the roots of a tooth. Denture users are then able to snap their dentures in rather than use an adhesive to keep them in place. The secure fit of the implants provide a more natural feel to dentures, adding comfort, and virtually eliminating problems caused by adhesive dentures such as pain from nerve compression, bone loss in the jaw, and a restricted diet.
Dental implants can significantly improve the quality of life for those who struggle to eat and speak with adhesive dentures. Best of all, the procedure is virtually painless – something many of the veterans were surprised about when their procedure was finished. But the most surprising aspect of all was how quick the entire procedure was from start to finish. “I truly couldn’t believe how quick and easy it was,” Chastain reflected once the procedure was complete. “I just couldn’t believe they did all the work in one day! One two-hour visit in the morning and then a fitting in the afternoon and that’s it! I’m so amazed.”
Cambridge is one of the best-equipped dental clinics in the country offering mini dental implants. They hope that by making this small contribution to community veterans, they will inspire others to contribute to the needs of veterans across the country.
Veterans like Ralph Cousins Jr., one of the five recipients, served 12 years of active duty and dedicated over 30 years of service to the air force.
“It’s a small thing to do, “ Dr. Wright told KAKE. “But then again, what if everybody would do something small for our veterans? Take care of those people who have taken care of us.”
The end of the day brought lots of hugs and gratitude, not only from the Veterans, but from all involved with such a rewarding project.
We take pride in the smiles we bring to our local community and value the lasting relationships we build with our patients. If you or someone you know might benefit from a mini dental implant, or if you would like more information about the implant services we offer, please get in touch with one of our friendly staff members at Cambridge Family Dentistry by calling (316) 687-2110 or toll-free at (877) 687-2110.