Volunteers Provide Free Dental Care

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BLUE SPRINGS, Mo. -- Dozens of desperate people spent the night on the cold, hard concrete Friday night. They lined up to receive free dental work on Saturday morning.

Debbie Heflin's pulled up a chair at the starting line.

"I have a hole in the back of two molars," Heflin said. "I have babied it for a year and a half and it's not getting any better."

Everyone seeking dental care braved the wind and cool temperatures. But that's nothing compared to the pain that many patients are facing. The list of complaints was almost as long as the line.

"I've got an abscess growing," said Ken Christansen. "My jaw was swollen up three times the size the other day, so I've got to have this tooth removed so I can eat."

The sound of drilling was sweet relief for some of the patients on Saturday. About 50 dental workers from around the area volunteered their time and equipment to make the clinic happen.

"There's more people who don't have extra money for things like this," said Dr. Alan Foster. "We are happy to help out and take one day out of the year to give away services."

The free services were enough to put a smile back on Debbie Heflin's face. Even if her mouth was full of gauze.

"I really appreciate everything they have done. They are wonderful here," Heflin said.

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