Many students don’t know the extent of services offered to them through East Tennessee State University. More than likely, you’ve heard about the Student Health Clinic, but have you ever heard about the dental services offered by the Dental Hygiene program?
“A lot of students don’t know that our clinic is even here, much less that we offer free services to them,” said Brennan Frazier, Dental Hygienist Class President of 2018. “Not everyone has insurance coverage and this is a great resource for students who want to stay proactive with their health, particularly for exchange students who are not familiar with the area.”
The ETSU dental hygiene clinic is located in Lamb Hall. The clinic hours of operation are: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday 8:15 a.m.-12 p.m. Services provided in the clinic are free of charge for current ETSU students and patients over the age of 55.
Services are also extended to faculty, staff and members of the community for a $20 charge. The only extra expense that may occur is a small service fee for sending x-rays to another dental clinic. The services offered are conducted by clinical students from the dental hygiene program, and they provide a chance for the students to improve their skills.
“We are a front line defense for oral care,” said Frazier. “We take this role very seriously because we are all passionate about oral health and believe everyone deserves the services we are providing.”
Some may be concerned about clinical students working in the facility and providing care, but the student hygienists have had hours of practice prior, including acting as a patient to become familiar with dental processes and patient perspectives. The students also work under the supervision of licensed instructors and an on-staff dentist.
“The ETSU dental hygiene clinic provides the opportunity for hands-on, real world experience,” said Frazier. “Regularly working one on one with patients, we get to exercise our education and expand our capacity to be the best we can be.”
Some of the services that clinical students receive hands-on training include: taking and processing x-rays, providing cleanings and instructions for patients, performing oral cancer screenings and developing personalized treatment plans. Dental students are even trained and qualified to offer local anesthesia and network with local dental offices to offer referrals.
“Standards are set high by our clinical coordinators and instructors,” said Frazier. “We are continually pushed to do and be more as professionals.”
For more information about the dental clinic located in Lamb Hall, visit www.etsu.edu/crhs/alliedhealth/dhyg/patient info.php or call 423-439-4514 to schedule an appointment.