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Hotline Offers Free Dental Advice

National call-in sponsors hope to boost overall health

THURSDAY, Feb. 17, 2005 (HealthDay News) -- Free dental advice will be available Feb. 18 when the Texas Academy of General Dentistry hosts SmileLine -- a national hotline that people can call to talk one-on-one with a dentist about oral health.

SmileLine will be offered from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. CST at the toll-free number 1-800-764-5333. Spanish-speaking volunteers will be available.

"Most people know that neglecting their oral health means risking cavities and gum disease," 2005 SmileLine coordinator Donna Miller said in a prepared statement. "We hope that this toll-free service will help answer difficult or embarrassing questions about dental and general health issues."

Gum disease can cause or worsen heart disease, low birth weight, respiratory disease and diabetes.

"By seeking dental care on a more preventive and proactive basis, patients will aid their overall health," Miller said.

This marks the 12th anniversary of the national SmileLine program, which has provided information to more than 9,000 people. The hotline also is meant to encourage and strengthen the relationship between patients and dentists.

More information

The American Dental Association has more about oral hygiene.

SOURCE: Texas Academy of General Dentistry, news release, February 2005
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