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Mobile dental clinic works to bring smiles to patients

The mobile dental unit is free and provides dental assistance to students mainly in elementary schools. (Greg Payne, NewsChannel 12 photo)

Johnnie Sampson Jr. was one of those children growing up who had issues with his teeth that couldn't be fixed for many reasons.

"I was one of those kids who suffered with toothaches for so long," said Sampson, Craven County Commissioner for District 3. "My parents didn't have any money so I had to suffer."

That same suffering is the reason why Sampson was so set on getting the new Smile Mobile for the county, ever since he became a commissioner more than 20 years ago.

The mobile dental unit is free and provides dental assistance to students mainly in elementary schools. It's currently available in Craven, Jones and Pamlico counties. It's currently in our area ready to service those who need it.

"There are children who wouldn't receive dental care otherwise they may have obstacles such as transportation or parents not being able to get off work so what we do is bring the dentist office to them," said Elizabeth Swicegood, who works with Dentist Smile Mobile.

Officials said in order to keep the program running, they need more children to sign up. Officials said everyone is able to utilize the program but you have to check with your child's school to make sure.

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