“By taking our mobile dental unit to the harbour not only did we help them out of immediate pain, we also helped them re-engage with dentistry which is crucial to their general health and wellbeing.”
Many of the patients had not seen a dentist for several years and were suffering from constant pain. “We were told you were coming and I couldn’t wait to see you as I’m having trouble with my teeth and am in a lot of pain,” said one patient who hadn’t attended for 15 years and required multiple extractions. “Only being ashore for a brief time between fishing means it’s difficult to make and stick to appointments and I have other priorities,” said another fisherman who attended the clinic, co-ordinated by the East Riding Healthtrainer service.
Dentaid has also run quay-side clinics in Poole and Peterhead as part of the Seafit programme and will be working with the Fishermen’s Mission and Seafarers Hospital Society to provide more dental care for fishermen in the future.