Oral & Dental Health Camp 2018
In April 2018, 21 volunteers from the UK and 11 volunteers from India, organised by Satya Samaj UK, provided free dental care to approximately 500 people, including almost 200 children, over four days. The first three days of the camp took place in the Swami Shukdevanand Charitable Hospital associated with Parmarth Niketan ashram and located in the foothills of the Himalayas near the city of Rishikesh. All volunteer activity took place with the support of Pujya Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji. On the fourth day, the volunteers travelled to Veerbhadra and set up a dental clinic in a small school building on the bank of the River Ganges. Many of the patients had never been to a dentist before and some were in dire need of oral and dental care. Satya Samaj UK will be working with local volunteer dentists in Rishikesh to continue to provide free oral and dental care whilst all the funds, equipment and materials that were generously donated for the camp are available. A sincere thank you to all who have donated. Your contribution has allowed us to help so many people. Due to the success of the camp, the need for oral and dental healthcare in this region and with Pujya Muniji’s blessing and invitation to return, plans are being made to establish a long-term arrangement and the ‘Satya Samaj UK – Oral & Dental Health Camp’ aims to return to Rishikesh in February 2019.
All adults and children had a dental examination, screened for oral disease, given oral hygiene & diet advice, tooth brushing instruction and were offered a tube of toothpaste and a toothbrush to take home.
Where appropriate, the following advice and treatments were provided:
- Tobacco cessation advice
- Application of topical fluoride varnish
- Removal of calculus
- Courses of antibiotic medication and painkillers
- Caries removal and restoration
- Extraction of teeth and roots
In addition, referrals were made for the management of cancerous and pre-malignant lesions, as well as one case of a failed repair of a fractured lower jaw.
Whilst the volunteers aimed to complete most treatment during the duration of the camp, the dentists from India agreed to continue the volunteer work until all required treatment had been provided for the patients that were examined. This included root canal treatment to retain strategic and anterior teeth and the provision of removable dentures. This will continue over the coming weeks and months.
All the volunteers and the charity organisation, Satya Samaj UK, would like to sincerely thank those family, friends and colleagues who donated funds towards this cause which allowed us to establish this camp and provide care to those underprivileged adults and children in most need. These donations have allowed us to make a positive change in these people’s lives. It is with these donations, and the kindness and generosity of the India dentists, that we can continue and maintain a lasting change in these people’s lives, and for generations to come.
Healthy Mouth, Healthy Body, Happy Life
We would like to recognise the contribution of local, national and international companies that have donated equipment and materials allowing us to provide oral and dental care for those people in need:
- Blink Medical
- DE Group Midlands (Conversa Pharma Group)
- Dental Sky
- Fortuna Healthcare
- GC Europe
- Gojo Industries (Europe Limited Gojo Industries Inc.)
- Kishor Lodhia, Niraj Lodhia and family (Simac Leather Industry, 5startools, 5starsportsuk)
- Michael Sharland
- Philips UK & Ireland
- Sabrina Parmar & Sanjeev Kutty
- Septodont Corporate Septodont UK
- SURG-INS Surgical Supplies
- VOCO GmbH
- Wisdom Toothbrushes
- Wendy Harley and the Infection Control Nurses in Birmingham, UK
Last, but by no means least, the UK volunteers would like to thank Pujya Muniji and the Parmarth Niketan ashram for their hospitality and support providing safe, comfortable and secure accommodation, clean filtered water and healthy food during our time delivering voluntary aid. The cleanliness of the ashram is testament to the people we encountered as well as the work ethic, devotion and dedication of the ashram volunteers and Rishikumar’s to help others. Three Rishikumar’s in particular we would like to mention; Parmarth, Anshit & Shusant, supported us while we provided care for patients and their dedication and enthusiasm for dentistry and helping others was exemplary.
Finally, thanks to all the amazing support we were able to help almost 500 adults and children who previously did not have access to dental care. The success of the camp has been such that we have been asked by Pujya Muniji to return next year and plans are already underway to grant this wish.
President of Satya Samaj UK
Clinical Lead for Satya Samaj UK