The Fayette Tribune, Oak Hill, W.Va.

Local News

November 28, 2012

Access to free preventive dental care Bridgemont’s best kept secret

MONTGOMERY — Have you ever looked across the Kanawha River from Route 60 toward Montgomery and wondered what was located on the 6th floor of Davis Hall? Through the floor to ceiling windows you can see chairs, lights and much activity under the new red bulkhead of the building.

If you have never visited this area, you may have missed two things: one of the best views in Montgomery and access to the finest free preventive dental care available in the region.

Dental hygiene students in the program at Bridgemont provide dental hygiene services in the form of cleanings, periodontal care, x-rays, sealants and many other preventive services free of charge in the on-campus clinic facility. There are 18 dental chairs located in this area with three radiography rooms. Those touring Davis Hall are always amazed that such a facility exists and how few people know about it. Just this past year the students treated over 1100 patients.

While most of the students enrolled at Bridgemont rely on highly technical software and computer hardware to complete their courses and attain their degrees, dental hygiene students must rely on the human factor in recruiting and treating patients for grades and achieving the skills necessary to graduate and obtain dental hygiene licensure. These students also rely heavily on technology in the delivery of care as all radiographs are digital and each dental chair is equipped with a computer for patient information and records. However, without reliable patients the students cannot meet graduation requirements.

Access to such free services is rare and many people travel from as far away as Nicholas, Raleigh and Putnam counties to receive care. All student clinics are supervised by a licensed dentist and staffed by licensed dental hygiene faculty who teach and evaluate students throughout the appointment. While the treatment is free, it does take a little longer since students are learning their skills, but if you have a little extra time, the price is right.

Appointments are being accepted for the spring semester or screenings can be conducted now for later appointment scheduling. Please call 304-734-6651 to schedule your visit.

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