The Bakersfield dentist is taking her apply together with her to serve the group through the pandemic
BAKERSFIELD, California – The COVID-19 pandemic has seen so many companies either close their doors or change the way they work. This also applies to those who take care of our teeth, but a local dentist is taking over her practice down the street.
“I’ve always wanted to give back to the community, Bakersfield is my home, my hometown,” said Dr. Michelle Juanatas Bowens.
Mother, wife, powerlifter, army veteran, buffalo soldier, and owner of Smile Makers Mobile Dental Care dental business are all Dr. Michelle Junatas Bowens turns out. She says the idea of offering home visits for oral hygiene appeared to her prepandemic, but it quickly became a reality after seeing a growing need.
“I’ve seen people let their oral health go down the drain. When they’re at home, they feel more comfortable.”
Dr. Bowens serves the community as a public health dentist. She says part of that role is educating the community about oral health and treating underserved communities. They find their traditional office in Delano, but their mobile clinic made their rounds to nearly 100 homes during the pandemic.
“I’m doing preventive treatment. So education, just cleaning, x-rays of course, diagnosing the things they need, whatever I could do for the patient in their homes, like fillings.”
The second generation dentist says she got her mobile clinic approval from the California dental office, adding that any dentist can apply and has all of the tools you would traditionally find in a dental office with her. She even has a portable patient x-ray and looks at the images on her laptop and phone. Everything is portable.
“Just enough for me to put my chair down and then unpack my gear and get access to electricity and running water again.”
How can she protect herself during the pandemic? She protects herself as if every patient has COVID.
While the small business is getting all kinds of insurance, Dr. Bowens also accessible to the more vulnerable communities and those fighting homelessness.
“I do community outreach events. So when I go in and do the screenings that are free for them. So I just let them know, educate them.”
Dr. Bowens adds that she is currently waiting for her bespoke van to house more equipment and treat patients inside.
Check here whether you want to connect to the mobile dental clinic.