How bad is the dental hygiene in the Philippines? According to a Philippine survey, 8 out of 10 Filipinos have dental problems. In a population of 104 million, that’s about 83 million Filipinos both young and old who are suffering from dental issues.
To make matters worse, at some point in time, the World Health Organization reported that there are only 43,220 dentists in the Philippines, making the equation really lopsided, the ratio being 1 dentist to 22,300 students. That is if the dentists decide to stay in the Philippines and practice in public health.
This is what we saw which inspired us to help make a difference, and we held the first dental mission in July, 2002. And we’re still doing it now.
Dental mission stats
Here are the running statistics of the dental mission held in July 2019.
- 1,654 patients
- 3,134 teeth extractions
- 1,156 teeth restorations
And a hundred more other treatments done during the entire dental mission. And we’re not done yet! We still have another one-week of dental mission to run before we call it a day (better yet call it a month. hehe).
Free Dental Treatment from San Francisco, California
A team from the University of the Pacific in San Francisco, California came to give free dental treatment to the students of Canjulao Elementary school in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu, from June 24 to 28, 2019.
They have been coming here for the past 3 years now. We’ve been working closely with Dr. Uy, the dentist for the whole district of Lapu-Lapu.
Fact: Lapu-Lapu City has more than 50 schools with only one dentist assigned to all of them. That’s like 50,000 students per 1 dentist.
Next stop is a 2-week dental mission in the northern part of Cebu.
The dental mission was held in San Remigio and Camoboan – towns north of Cebu. It’s a 4-hour drive from Cebu city. The team was there from July 8-20 and they gave free treatment to students and people in the community.
During the dental mission, the team had to stop operation one afternoon because there was non-stop rain and the wind was so strong. They even have to lay the fans down otherwise, it will get swayed and probably brought down by the wind.
Here in the Philippines, the further you are from the city, the less healthcare and benefits you receive from the government. Some of the patients have never gone to the dentist even once in their life.
Dental Mission with Singaporean team
It’s the third set of dental mission and this time we held it at Banawa Elementary school, here in Cebu city. The dentists gave free treatment to the students, teachers and some parents.
Trivia: There are only 4 dentists assigned to Cebu city when there are 92 schools all over Cebu with an average of 1,500 students in each school.
More free dental treatments in Cebu
We still have one more dental mission to go before we finish this year’s rounds of dental missions, but it’s been a good run so far. There were a few obstacles, doing dental mission in an open area on a typhoon season, but everything went well.
Thank you for your continuous support!
Thank you for making these dental missions possible. Because of your support, we were able to help and provide dental treatments to people who wouldn’t otherwise get it anywhere else for free.
Seeing a dentist will already cost a day’s wages for a common Filipino family, therefore, it’s a huge difference when we do these dental missions. And you have made that difference with us!
Want to join us?
If you’re a dentist and would want to join our yearly dental mission, you can find out more information on our Dental Mission page.