Help! Teeth Hurt!!: Creating a Specialized Dental Clinic for Adults with Developmental Disabilities
Faculty of Dentistry, Faculty of Medicine, Peter A. Allard School of Law, UBC Sauder School of Business

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The goal of this project is to create a specialized dental clinic for adults with Developmental Disabilities such as Autism, Down Syndrome and Cerebral Palsy at the new St. Paul's Hospital being built in East Vancouver. Many adults with Developmental Disabilities (DDs) require dental treatment under general anesthesia (GA) since they can't be treated in a typical dental office. Often adults with DDs have complex medical conditions which require that they be hospitalized for GA. There is no specialized dental clinic in B.C. that includes a GA suite for these adults, and dental students currently receive little or no training in how to treat them. Adults with DDs frequently wait years for treatment, often while suffering in pain. These adults also suffer serious and irreversible dental decay while they wait for care in standard operating rooms that are not specially equipped for dental treatment. Adults with DDs too often lose teeth because they are too decayed to be saved. The specialized dental clinic would treat adults with DDs and also be a training centre for students in the UBC Faculties of Dentistry (dental and dental hygiene students), Medicine (anesthesiology and other specialties) and Social Work, to teach these students how to ensure that adults with DDs can access necessary dental treatment under GA. The Project team is reaching out to Government, dentists, dental corporations, the disability community and philanthropists to acquire funding to help build the dental clinic and to fund complex treatments. To make a donation to the clinic or for more information about the Help! Teeth Hurt project, and to learn how you can help, please go to our website:

Or, you can contact Inclusion BC, which will collect donations for the project, at

This Project is jointly supported by Inclusion BC, PosAbilities and Burnaby Association for Community Inclusion, as well as adults with DDs and their families and caregivers across BC .
For more information, you can email Joan Rush, Director of the Help! TeethHurt Dental Clinic Project at

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