At least, that’s the idea behind Virtual Dental Home (VDH). VDH is a California-based program which works like a mobile dental office: a specially-trained hygienist packages a chair and dental equipment into a car and travels to underprivileged schools and neighborhoods.
Thanks to VDH, kids are able to quickly, easily, and affordably access high-quality dental care. It’s like having a dental clinic come to you.
Many people are unaware that the number one chronic disease among children is tooth decay. If you’ve ever had a serious toothache or suffered from tooth decay, then you know how painful it can be.
Kids often struggle silently with tooth decay. They may be embarrassed that their teeth hurt or unwilling to tell their parents. Of course, this just makes the problem worse.
In other cases, parents may simply be unable to afford dental care or lack dental insurance.
But here’s the good news: dental disease is almost always preventable. When children get routine dental care, they significantly reduce their risk of developing any type of dental disease or dental problems.
How Virtual Dental Home Works
Here’s how Virtual Dental Home works: a dental hygienist puts a collapsible dental chair, laptop, and handheld x-ray machine in the trunk of his or her car. Then, that hygienist travels to local schools or community centers.
Children receive a basic checkup. The hygienist collects information about the child’s oral health and then uploads that information to a secure web server.
A dentist checks the information and makes a diagnosis from his or her office. Then, the dentist puts together a treatment plan for the child. The hygienist then applies that treatment plan – which in many cases can be performed directly at the community center or school.
Children who require more advanced treatment can book an appointment with the dentist on the spot.
Virtual Dental Home has operated successfully for three years in California. So far, over 2000 patients have been treated in 45 sites across the state. Patients are overwhelmingly supportive of the program: 100% of respondents said they would continue with the program if it continued to be available.
There’s no word yet on if other states will begin adopting similar programs of their own. But based on the trial run in California, Virtual Dental Home is a safe, valuable, and cost-effective program that benefits those who need dental care the most.
Kid-Friendly Dental Care in Birmingham
Hoover AL dentist Dr. Gentry Gonzalez, at Valleydale Dental, is offering a $75 new patient special. With kid-friendly specialists and a comfortable experience, Valleydale Dental is helping kids in the Birmingham area maintain healthy, clean teeth for life.