Wed09172014

Business & Real Estate

Local dentists offer new smiles for vets


ellie Van Houtte/Town crier
Dentists Bruce Hartley, from left, John McFarlane and Joseph Field are slated to host Smiles for Troops Nov. 9 at the Peninsula Center of Cosmetic Dentistry offices at 99 Third St.

A downtown Los Altos dental office is not only aiming to put smiles on the faces of local military veterans – it seeks to enhance them as well.

Dentists Bruce Hartley, Joseph Field and John McFarlane will host the inaugural Smiles for Troops event Nov. 9 at their Peninsula Center of Cosmetic Dentistry (PCCD) office, located at 99 Third St. The all-day event will allow the volunteer group, which includes a horde of PCCD staff members and other dental professionals, to provide free procedures to local military veterans in need of dental care.

Field said he and his colleagues decided to host the event after discovering that even routine dental maintenance procedures, such as cleanings, are few and far between for active military personnel deployed overseas. Playing catch-up with sorely needed dental work can also be a costly burden for those returning home after serving their country.

“We just wanted to find a way to give back to the community,” Field said. “For veterans coming back home, it’s hard to get new jobs, which make their finances challenging. We saw this as a way to address a huge need.”

The event – which will include the services of Dr. Kingstone Shih, an endodontist, and Dr. Joseph Kim, an oral surgeon, will provide a wide range of urgent and cosmetic dental care, including fillings, wisdom teeth removal, root canals and chipped tooth repairs, among other services. While they aim to address the most severe cases first, Field noted that the group has set a goal of assisting approximately 30 veterans at the event.

“We’ve done these kinds of community service projects before, so we’re able to work pretty efficiently and get a lot done in a relatively small amount of time,” he said, pointing specifically to previous volunteer efforts that helped domestic violence victims in Bay Area clinics and abroad.

All participating veterans will also receive a free cleaning, as well as goodie bags containing gifts donated by vendors, including a Sonicare electric toothbrush and other dental hygiene items. Each veteran will also receive a voucher for a complimentary family portrait from local photographer and PCCD client Robyn Basso.

For more information, call 948-5524 or visit pccd.net.

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