When you hear the term, “medical missions,” chances are that you immediately think of a mission trip that includes medical professionals like doctors, nurses, and maybe even optometrists. But were you aware that we also regularly have dentists join us in the mission field?

Here in the west, most of us have access to some amount of oral health maintenance; even if we’re not able to see a dentist regularly for some reason, most of us still have access to the tools needed to promote oral health like toothbrushes, toothpastes, floss, and mouthwash.

Many of the patients we see on our medical mission trips do not even have these tools at their disposal.

Our Patients In The Mission Field

 Most people we treat in our free medical clinics have never met a dentist or had any kind of oral exam or treatment. As you can imagine, this often leads to serious issues with infection or impacted teeth and tooth decay. Without proper tools to treat their dental problems, many people are left to try to extract rotten teeth by using the tools that they have at their disposal, such as rocks or sticks.

Needless to say, this is not an ideal situation for anyone to find themselves in.

Patients Being Treated At  Mission Partners For Christ Dental Clinics

How Dentists Can Bring Healing and Hope to Thousands in The Mission Field

Our dentists are a crucial part of our medical mission teams. Since many of our patients have never sat through a dental exam before, this is the first time many are also learning the basics of how to properly care for their oral health.

While our dentists are not set up for complicated surgeries, they do perform extractions when needed. This sets our patients up for success in proper healing; every tool used is specifically created for that procedure and is properly sterilized, protecting our patients from severe illness.

Our dentists also will treat abscesses and will do some cleaning. 

They will also provide much needed education about how to maintain oral hygiene and will give out toothbrushes and toothpaste to those who need them.

How You Can Help Make Dental Care Accessible for Underserved Communities

If you are a dentist, the most important thing you can do to make a difference is: join a medical mission trip!

Your generous gift of your time and expertise will be greatly appreciated by all our patients, and will make a lasting impact on the lives of the thousands of people we see on each trip. God will also use your dental skills to open doors to sharing the gospel with unreached souls.

If you are not a dentist, share this blog post. You never know if there may be a dentist in your network who has felt a call into missions but didn’t know how to get started!

You can also donate to Mission Partners For Christ to ensure that we can provide the tools necessary to continue offering dental care during our free clinics in underserved villages.

Are you a dentist who has served in missions? Whether you served with Mission Partners For Christ or another organization, share your experiences and encouragement for others in the comments!