A Reason To Smile


Sometimes we forget just how important a smile is. Tough to do it though if your teeth are a mess, or if you’re in pain and don’t have any resources to do something about it.

Karen Rutar is one of 60 homeless clients with a reason to smile again, thanks to the urgent dental care she received at HealthNet’s annual Dental Blitz Day on April 16 at People’s Health & Dental Center.

Although she was a little anxious about seeing a dentist for the first time in years, Karen expressed thanks to the volunteer oral surgeons from Indiana Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Associates and the staff from HealthNet’s Homeless Initiative Program and Dental Services Program for making the event possible. 

Sixty homeless people received urgent dental care during this year’s Blitz Day, which included a record number of extractions—140 painful teeth. The need was so overwhelming that less urgent cases were scheduled for follow up at the Homeless Initiative Program’s dental clinic, held each Thursday at People’s Health & Dental Center. The clients were referred to HealthNet from the Indy Homeless Connect event held earlier that week at the Indiana Convention Center.