By Frank Stanko
North Dakota State College of Science’s Allied Dental Education Clinic wants to “Give Kids a Smile.”
From 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Friday, Feb. 10, free dental care for children and youth age 3-18 will be provided at the campus’ Mayme Green Allied Health Center, just off Fourth Street in Wahpeton.
“I think my best memories are just seeing the smile on someone’s face,” said Chanel Malone, the Give Kids a Smile program coordinator for NDSCS. “Especially if you took them out of pain, or there’s something they’re really excited about. (It could be) their first time at the dentist and they enjoyed the experience.”
Dental hygiene and dental assistant students will perform cleanings, radiographs, sealants, fluoride applications and oral health education.
“The procedures the students are doing are things they typically do daily and have been trained to do already in the clinic. The second year hygiene students have had lots of experiences cleaning teeth on their patients. The assistants, they have been preparing with assisting dentists, with doing sealants, polishing and flossing. They’ve had clinical experience already,” Malone explained.
Four dentists will also be on hand to provide restorative procedures, such as fillings and extractions, or to give patient exams.
“We schedule each patient as a hygiene appointment,” Malone said. “After the cleaning, they receive an exam and are sent to a restorative dentist as needed. It’s a good thing to know — patients do not need to know what their exact needs are.”
All patients must make their appointments in advance. There is no deadline for registering.
“Even if somebody called the day before and wanted to make an appointment, they could. I think we have about two-thirds of the schedule filled right now,” Malone said.
To schedule an appointment, contact the NDSCS Allied Dental Education Clinic at 1-800-342-4325 ext. 3-2333 or 701-671-2333. A parent or legal guardian must accompany patients younger than 18 years.
Give Kids a Smile, a national event, provides free dental care for children who may have difficulty accessing it or families with limited financial resources.
This is Malone’s third year participating in Give Kids a Smile. NDSCS has been participating in it since 2009.
“We like the things that we can do for the community,” she said. “We like helping out. It’s a really good experience for the students and patients. It makes everybody feel good and we like to help out when we can.”
See the full article online at wahpetondailynews.com.