It would have cost Karen Peterson more than $12,000 for her 12-year-old fraternal twins to get braces if not for a unique program that quietly began last year in Calhoun County."My boys couldn't have gotten their teeth fixed without it," Peterson said. "They would have had to go through life with teeth like mine."
Four years after the successful launch of the Dentists' Partnership, a Community HealthCare Connections program in which local dentists provide free care in exchange for patients volunteering in the community, a similar program for orthodontists and low-income patients has developed.
Tentatively named Better Smiles for a Better World, the program requires a deeper commitment from both the orthodontist and the patients because of the time and expenses incurred.
But the program has the potential to help deserving children get a better start in life, with confidence in their smiles and the knowledge that they have passed the favor forward.And the idea has started to catch on.