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Guelph dental clinic gives back by offering a day of free dental work

Friday was a busy day at Westwood and Starwood Dental Clinic in Guelph, as they offered free dental care to adult patients for the eighth year.

With the help of Gift of the Heart Charity, by the end of the day, the clinic saw almost 100 patients and did work that would have added up to $28,700.

People began lining up at 11:30 p.m. on Thursday, according to staff, as the clinic saw patients on a first-come-first-serve basis.

“I got nothing but time and I’m willing to wait,” said Deanis Smith, who said he was waiting for about six hours before he was seen.

The lineup outside the Guelph clinic at around 7:00 a.m. (Submitted/Cody Moore)

Worth it – many in line said.

“If I would have waited it probably would have cost $1,400 or $1,500,” said James Ironside, who lined up around 6.a.m.

Clients could either get a filling, cleaning or an extraction at the clinic.

Robert Horvath thought he was coming in to get a cavity filled but was told his bottom molar had to be removed.

“It went surprisingly well. The only bad news is that there’s one less tooth in my mouth,” Horvath said.

Not only did the appointment go well – Horvath has become a new patient.

“I’m coming back at the end of the month for a cleaning service,” he said.

Dr. Michael Bull, a dentist and one of the clinic owners said it’s a way to give back to the community who has supported their business for decades.

Dr. Michael Bull examines a patient on Free Dental Day at Westwood and Starwood Dental on June 2, 2023. (CTV News/Heather Senoran)

“It’s the least we can do to give back to members of the community who might need a little bit of assistance,” Dr. Bull told CTV News.

Dr. Bull said it was dangerous for people to ignore tooth pain because of a lack of insurance or money.

“It doesn’t happen frequently anymore because we have antibiotics but there have been cases of people actually dying from leaving infections in their mouths. So it’s important that you have proper dental care and follow through with any recommended treatment,” he said.

The federal government's new dental benefit offers free care for kids under 12-years-old, in families earning less than $90,000 a year.

But the clinic hopes more help will be on the way, to meet the demand they saw first-hand on Friday. Top Stories

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