Dentists donate $60,000 in dental work

Wesley LeBlanc
Posted 11/21/17

MIDDLEBURG – For years, Bob Coffey, has lived with an agonizing pain.

It’s a throbbing, stinging and pressurized pain that doesn’t really let up or disappear – he’s just learned to live …

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Dentists donate $60,000 in dental work

Posted

MIDDLEBURG – For years, Bob Coffey, has lived with an agonizing pain.

It’s a throbbing, stinging and pressurized pain that doesn’t really let up or disappear – he’s just learned to live with it. His sleep is restless. His meals are painful. Every movement of his mouth is filled with extreme discomfort. The source of this pain? A tooth that needs extracting.

On Nov. 17, around 4 p.m., Coffey’s wife and three grandkids lined up outside the doors of Middleburg Family Dental Care in anticipation. They were there until Coffey himself came to relieve them around 5 a.m. the next day. This wasn’t the release of a new Star Wars movie – this was the release of Coffey’s pain.

In celebration of its third year as a dental office, Middleburg Family Dental Care performed free tooth extractions from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Nov. 18. All one had to do to receive the extraction was stand in line and wait for their number to be called. After filling out some paperwork, they were sent to the back where one of 10 dentists would remove the pesky tooth one might be battling against. At 7 a.m., more than 60 had already lined up.

Coffey, desperate to rid himself of the infected tooth and in turn, daily torment, had his family line up the day prior to the event to help ensure he goes first. He was out of the office and out of pain before 7:30 a.m.

“This dentist here was the absolute best I’ve ever been to,” Coffey said. “That tooth was broken off to the gum and they got it out. There’s no more pressure, no more pain, I’ll sleep better and I can enjoy eating again,” continued Coffey.

It’s stories like this that make resident dentists Tracey Rienland and Tony Miller happy to perform these extractions for free, which equates to nearly $60,000 of dental work completed that Saturday.

“There’s a big need out here, especially those who have difficulty accessing dental care,” Rienland said. “This is something that we can do to help contribute and make a difference.”

For Miller, the reason he gives back in this way is gratitude.

“I’m grateful for the Middleburg community and just seeing how strong they are, how they’ve welcomed me with open arms, this is just a little token of my gratitude,” Miller said. “It’s a way to give back and fill a need for folks who are so down on their luck, so in need of this care but maybe unable to pay for it.”

With a capacity for 100 extractions, despite doing their best, the two resident dentists, Rienland and Miller, just can’t get all of the work done alone. Fortunately, the dental community is full of other dentists willing to volunteer their time for this cause. Eight other dentists joined the team for the Middleburg event. One of them, Melissa King, drove from Melbourne, a two-and-a-half-hour drive, to donate her time.

“Us dentists are part of a big community and the same network,” King said. “I was looking for ways to give back and they said they could use some help.”

King is no stranger to extraction events like this. Just seven days prior, she helped an office in Okeechobee, where more than 40 people attended for fillings, extractions and cleanings.

The ability to give back, and see happiness and relief as an immediate response, is what drives King to charitable events like this.

“When you pull up and see this line of patients outside the door, see what a need there is, it makes it worth the drive and early hours – you know people need it and you know you’re going to help make it happen,” King said.

For Coffey, giving back to the community like this is a sure way to guarantee his support.

“More businesses and companies ought to support the community that supports them,” Coffey said. “Because of today, I’ll only be going to this dentist from now on.

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