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Pacific Celebrates National Children’s Dental Health Month

March  02, 2010

Hundreds of children received free dental screenings and oral health education this February thanks to the hard work of students and faculty at the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry. Through events, screenings at the school's pediatric clinic and visits to a local elementary school, faculty and students were able to teach children good oral hygiene habits and provide important screenings and treatment.

To honor National Children's Dental Health Month, the dental school's Union City clinic participated in Give Kids A Smile®, a nationwide event sponsored by the American Dental Association. Through a partnership with the Southern Alameda County Dental Society, dental professionals and residents at the Union City Clinic provided screenings, and when needed, complex procedures such as fillings and extractions for nearly 100 children. Children and parents also received oral hygiene instructions and free toothbrushes and toothpaste.

In addition to the dental services offered, kids were able to participate in a handful of fun activities such as face painting and balloon animals. A volunteer staffer dressed up as the tooth fairy to entertain all in attendance.

Furthering University of the Pacific's community service efforts throughout Northern California, dental hygiene students at the Pacific Dental Care Clinic in Stockton also educated school-aged children through Give Kids A Smile®, an event they have enthusiastically participated in for many years.

In San Francisco at the school's Hutto Patterson Pediatric Clinic, free screenings were offered throughout the month of February. With a pre-booked appointment, children received a free visual exam to identify any trouble spots in the mouth, as well as a dental gift bag with toothbrush.

Lastly, students and faculty spent time at San Francisco's Rosa Parks Elementary, a partner school of the pediatric clinic. Dr. Jeff Wood, Dr. Rinku Saini and Nancy Thompson, all with the school's pediatric dentistry program, were among the school representatives who gave mini-lectures to elementary school students which included tips for good oral health.

"This month we spent a significant amount of time educating children and their parents about the importance of a healthy mouth," said Dr. Jeff Wood, chair of the pediatric department. "We feel confident that programs and community partnerships, such as the partnership with Rosa Parks Elementary, helps to promote oral health and overall body health in our local children."

 

Category Type: Community Outreach

Contact:  Office of Public Relations, 415.929.6434, pr@pacific.edu