Sep. 27, 2022
Everybody deserves a smile they love. That’s why SmileDirectClub has partnered with cosmetic dentist Dr. Amira Ogunleye to advocate for marginalized communities and their access to dental care.
Dr. Amira Ogunleye, affectionately known as Dr. A, shares that there are 3 reasons for disparity in dental care: access, expense, and the lack of minority dentists. “Sixty percent of counties in this country don’t have an orthodontist office,” says Dr. A. “It’s not just an access issue, it’s also a financial issue. The average cost of braces is $5000 to $8000. Financially that is out of reach for a huge percentage of the population.”
SmileDirectClub offers a comprehensive solution. Our teledentistry platform offers dental care to people in places where there may not be an orthodontist office. And our aligners are affordable, with a price that is 60% less than braces.1
To address the problem of a lack of minority dentists, earlier this year SmileDirectClub partnered with the National Dental Association to create a new scholarship program for African American oral health professionals, awarding a total of $210,000 to 28 deserving students.
From Egyptian immigrant to cosmetic dentist to the stars
Dr. A, who immigrated to the United States from Egypt as a child, knows what it’s like to not be able to afford care.
“A visit to the dental office or an orthodontist was considered a luxury, and we could not afford it,” she says. She’s risen from those humble origins to become one of the youngest people ever to graduate from Howard University’s College of Dentistry. Dr. A became a dentist at the young age of 23. Now she owns Beautiful Smiles, a cosmetic dentistry office in Miami, Florida, that has clients like LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Gabrielle Union.
Dr. A is also the newest member of the SmileDirectClub Partner Network, which has grown to include over 1000 dentists across the United States. So, if you live in the Miami area, you can start your Smile JourneyTM with Dr. A.
“SmileDirectClub believes everyone deserves a smile that they love, and we created our innovative telehealth platform for teeth straightening to bridge the gaps of access, affordability, and convenience,” says John Sheldon, Chief Marketing Officer, SmileDirectClub.
“We know minority communities are disproportionately impacted by these barriers,” continues John. “And by teaming up with Dr. Amira we can shed light on these inequities and find solutions to address the fundamental issues, while also providing an affordable teeth straightening solution to her patients.”
1“60% less than braces” based on Single Pay vs. avg. fees (incl. diagnostics and exams) for braces treatment ($5600), as reported in a nat’l survey of orthodontists. Comparison does not include added costs, such as retainers, and is limited to mild-to-moderate teeth correction, as braces may treat additional issues.