Back from Jamaican Dental Mission Trip
The trip last week to Jamaica for working with the organization, Great Shape Jamaica, went very well. We had over 30 volunteers for the week, which included myself and 5 other dentist from around the U.S. and 12 last year dental students from Temple Dental School in Philadelphia. It was a great group of people and even though we worked hard during the day extracting teeth and doing fillings, we had a fun time together. Sandals Resorts helped sponsor this mission trip by providing the lodging for everyone at their resort in Montego Bay. The clinic that I worked in was in Maroon Town which was about an hour and fifteen minutes drive up into the hills of Jamaica on some pretty bad roads. Once we got there, we had one Oral Surgeon, about 6 dental students and 3 dental assistants. Everyone but me performed mostly tooth extractions and I got to do fillings, mostly on the front teeth. The front teeth are very important for the Jamaicans to keep because without them it is very difficult to get a good job. The dental equipment we had was adequate but very frustrating because something was always breaking down. It was the hardest that I have worked in a long time, but at the same time it was very rewarding! In the evenings, we would all meet up for dinner and have a good time around the resort. Coming back to the U.S. made me realize how lucky we are to have our basic infrastructure like nice roads, clean water and reliable electricity that we all take for granted.