A wellness fair packed with people coming and going and in the middle of it all…a dental chair?
That’s right. On Wednesday, May 18 from 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m., the Virginia Dental Association (VDA) will bring a portable dental chair to the City of Fredericksburg Employee Wellness Fair (Dorothy Hart Community Center – 408 Canal Street). At the wellness fair, VDA member dentists will provide screenings for oral cancer.
Anyone is welcome to sit in the dental chair and receive a two-minute screening for oral cancer. The process is non-invasive and does not require instruments; the dentist simply checks in and around the mouth area for abnormalities. Each year, 42,000 people are diagnosed with and 8,000 die from oral cancer. That’s why the VDA wants to make sure all Virginians are screened for the deadly disease.
“We are excited to bring our ‘Where’s the Chair?’ campaign to Fredericksburg,” says Dr. Richard Taliaferro, president of the VDA. “We expect to catch the public by surprise with the dental chair in such an uncommon place, but every Virginian needs to be screened for oral cancer so why not take the message right to the people?”
Already “The Chair” has appeared at public events in Hampton Roads, Roanoke, Richmond, Charlottesville and Fairfax County. Each time, VDA member dentists screened people “off the street.” In Roanoke, Dr. David Black even conducted an oral cancer screening on a news anchor live on the air.
At the event, the VDA will provide information on oral health services and how to find a local VDA member dentist. While in the dental chair, people are encouraged to snap “Healthy Selfies” with the hashtag #wheresthechair and share the photos on social media.