Linda is an elderly woman from Florida who is able to live independently in her home, but enjoys spending time with her son and dogs. She isn’t able to walk steadily, and also has chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and osteoporosis. Linda had not seen a dentist in 25 years, and was having trouble with her oral health. She began experiencing complications that eventually led all but two teeth to break off at the gumline, leaving multiple root tips behind. Unfortunately, Linda’s dentures had also been broken for many years, leaving her toothless and unable to chew properly.
Because she wasn’t able to eat or enjoy food, Linda lost a significant amount of weight and was left with digestive problems and excruciating cysts in her mouth. Linda’s doctor strongly urged her to address her dental problems and restore her quality of life, but her Medicaid and Medicare coverage were not enough to cover the cost of the extensive treatment she would need.
Fortunately, Meals on Wheels referred Linda to Donated Dental Services (DDS), a program that allows dentists to volunteer their time and services to a patient in need. Volunteer Dr. Michael Dorociak extracted five teeth and root tips and donated full upper and lower dentures fabricated by DSG Group Practice Solutions laboratory. Thanks to these generous volunteers, Linda’s life has changed and she can again smile and eat without pain.
“She has struggled and suffered with her condition for more years than I can even remember, but your kindness and generosity has given her a new lease on life! Without your help she would still be suffering daily with no end in sight. Words cannot adequately express how grateful we are for the badly needed dental work you have done for her.” — The family of Linda
Without volunteers like Dr. Dorociak and DSG Group Practice Solutions Laboratory to help out patients in need, these patients likely wouldn’t receive life-saving care. To see how DLN • Florida changed lives in the fiscal year 2015-2016, visit the State Annual Report.