On Feb. 27th Dixie State University hosted their quarterly Dental Hygiene Day for pre-registered clients of The Learning Center for Families at the Dr. Mervyn and Sue Cox Dental Hygiene Clinic located at 1526 East Medical Center Drive in St. George. Dr. Tyler Torres, DDS from Dixie Pediatric Dental volunteered his time to help provide basic prophylactic care and dental education at no cost to children and their family members.
Since 2002, the DSU Dental Hygiene Program has collaborated with nursing staff at TLC to identify families in the community who are in need of the free dental services and education. Clinics are conducted twice every semester by students in the Dental Hygiene Program and local dentists who volunteer their time and services. Each participating family member will attend four hygiene clinics during the program year. Participants receive oral health screenings, prophylactic treatments, sealants and/or fluoride washes as indicated. Patients receive a new toothbrush as well as toothpaste and floss at each visit.
“The focus of the clinics is on developing life-long dental habits that will ensure the family takes good care of their teeth and gums,” said Tena Heward, RN, Health Services Coordinator for TLC. “Regular preventive care can help detect dental problems early which can save thousands in long term costs. Many of the children’s parents we visit have never seen a dentist. We want to break the cycle for their children; we want them to understand that seeing a dentist and preventive care is the key for life long oral health.”
DSU’s Dental Hygiene program was developed in the fall of 1998 and is accredited by the American Dental Association. Dr. Tyler Torres, DDS and his partner Dr. Brett K. Christensen, DMD from Dixie Pediatric Dental have been volunteering on the TLC for Families Health Services Advisory Committee and on TLC hygiene clinic days at Dixie State University for several years now. “We’re so grateful for Dixie Pediatric Dental and for all of the dentists in our community who help with this program throughout the year including Dr. David Morris, DDS with the Dental Center of St. George and Dr. Matthew R. Valantine, DDS with Valantine Family Dentistry” said Heward.