Once again, Weymouth dentist offers a day of free tooth care

Dentist Larry Burt and about 40 other volunteers will offer free services Sunday. Dentist Larry Burt and about 40 other volunteers will offer free services Sunday. (Istock)
By Sarah Moomaw
Globe Correspondent / May 19, 2011

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This weekend, a Weymouth dentist will open his doors for a day of free dentistry to anyone who walks into his six-chair office on Main Street.

Dr. Larry Burt and a team of about 40 other volunteers will offer their services for “Giving Smiles, Changing Lives’’ at South Shore Dentistry from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday as a way to give back to the community, he said.

All fillings, extractions, and routine cleanings done between those hours will be free of charge. “Giving Smiles, Changing Lives,’’ based on a successful program in Oklahoma started by a colleague and friend of Burt’s, aims to give those who need dental work the access to it, without the financial burden.

Last May, Burt and a team of 35 volunteers saw 105 patients, giving almost $37,000 in dental services. This year’s team includes an oral surgeon, general dentists, hygienists, and local dental students and instructors from Porter and Chester Institute in Canton.

Burt said some of his vendors donate dental supplies for the event, but those don’t cover the entire day.

“Whatever it costs me out of pocket, when I die, it’s not going to make a difference whether I spent it or not,’’ he said Friday as he hung banners around town to promote “Giving Smiles, Changing Lives.’’

Patients must register and will be seen on a first-come, first-served basis. Midafternoon, the volunteers will evaluate those already registered and decide when to stop taking additional walk-ins, to ensure that everyone would be seen before day’s end.

Burt, who has practiced in Weymouth for more than a decade and in greater Boston for more than 20 years, said he enjoys hearing the stories behind the patients’ lives and knowing what a difference the day of free dentistry makes in their lives.

“For 10 minutes of my time, I could give this person a big leg up. Why wouldn’t I do it?’’ he said.

South Shore Dentistry is located at 851 Main St., Weymouth. For more information, visit or call 781-331-3030.

Sarah Moomaw can be reached at