Not only did the pandemic prevent us from providing treatment from a mobile dental unit in 2020, it also resulted in a partnership funding shortfall for 2021. We know the difference our award-winning Smiles at Sea tour makes to local fishing communities and really didn’t want to miss another year of treatment so, being a mission-led community interest company (CIC), Smile Together generously funded this fifth harbourside tour and what a resounding success it was!

We’ve proudly published our latest Impact Special Edition showcasing our #SmilesAtSeaUK 2021 success in reaching out to the local fishing community across Cornwall and Devon harboursides.

Thanks to everyone concerned for helping us make a difference in a community that rarely gets to see a dentist due to the demands of their work.

We visited 4 harbourside locations in 5 days treating 102 fishermen and their dependent family members, 40% of whom hadn’t visited a dentist for 5 years or more (10% for more than 10 years).  We did 20 fillings, 10 extractions/root removals, 4 scale and polish and 6 x-rays, and 2 patients were encouraged to contact our UDCH for emergency treatment with another referred for complex urgent minor oral surgery. Only 33% had visited Smiles at Sea previously so we reached a relatively new audience, 100% rated our visit as excellent and 98% said they’d visit us next year.

We gave Home Education Packs to all fishermen and their families who attended which included top dental tips for the family along with a toothbrush, toothpaste and a toothbrushing timer. In some locations there were free Healthy Lifestyle advice and information from other healthcare providers and every eligible person who saw our dentist was entered into a free prize draw. We also had goodies available for all those who brought along their old toothbrushes, empty toothpaste tubes and associated packaging for recycling through our commitment to Colgate TerraCycle.

Click here to download your digital version of our Impact Special Edition for 2021 and here to watch our video about #SmilesAtSeaUK 2021 (with our thanks to The Fisherman’s Friends for permission to use their music)!

Smiles at Sea – treating fishermen at the harboursides of Cornwall and Devon since 2017.

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