Your donation to Children's Dental Services (CDS) helps low-income children and pregnant women receive much needed dental care.
Peter** was in a lot of pain when one of our home visiting hygienists, Donna**, saw him for the first time. Donna was able to see Peter through a unique partnership between CDS and a local home based early Head Start program. His teeth were severely decayed, some to the point of infection. He and his family speak Hmong, but with the help of Esther**, one of our many bilingual staff members, we were able to convince his family of the importance of having an exam and dental treatment done, as untreated cavities and the resulting infection can lead to serious health issues. Peter didn’t have dental insurance at the time, so Esther helped the family apply for medical assistance, which he was eligible for. They came in to the main office for an exam with Dr. Crow** who recommended that he have his dental treatment completed under general anesthesia. Since Peter was so afraid to open his mouth, returning to the dentist office for multiple appointments would have been traumatic for such a young boy of only 2 years old. Instead, we were able to complete all of the treatment in one appointment while Peter was asleep under general anesthesia at the HealthPartners Same Day Surgery Center. Peter woke up with a healthier smile. Because the cavities were treated, he no longer experiences the pain that made him scared to open his mouth. We were also able to develop a relationship with him and his family that facilitates his continued dental care. We still see Peter for follow-up appointments and exams. The last time that Donna saw Peter, he ran up to her with a huge smile to show her his teeth. Now Peter is at a Head Start school where CDS provides on-site dental care for students during the school day. He will continue to receive follow-up care at his school and CDS can continue to serve as Peter’s dental home long after he leaves Head Start at any of our 200 satellite sites located throughout the Twin Cities Metropolitan area.
**Names have been changed to protect patient confidentiality.
Since 1919, Children’s Dental Services (CDS) is dedicated to improving the oral health of children from families with low incomes by providing accessible treatment and education in our diverse community. CDS is a non-profit public health dental clinic that provides culturally targeted dental care to low-income children and pregnant women. A hallmark of CDS is its work to eliminate cultural and lingual barriers to care through the provision of culturally targeted and translated services. CDS has a multilingual, multicultural staff, collectively speaking 15 different languages and hailing from 18 different countries. CDS accepts all forms of public and private dental insurance and has a sliding fee scale for low-income families that are not eligible for dental insurance. CDS is headquartered in Northeast Minneapolis but has staff located across the state.
During its history CDS has pioneered two major concepts for making affordable dental care accessible to children: 1) CDS was the first dental program in the nation to provide on-site dental care to Head Start children, and 2) CDS provides on-site and mobile care to children in schools. CDS is currently the only dental provider offering on-site school dental care in Minnesota. CDS provides a full range of culturally focused dental services, and is Minnesota’s largest single provider of dental services to children from families with the lowest incomes in the state. CDS was recognized for its mobile care program by the Minnesota Council of Non-profit’s Mission Award for Innovation in 2006.