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Dental Hygiene Faculty Complete Local Anesthesia & Laser Training for Certification

Dental Hygiene Faculty Complete Local Anesthesia & Laser Training for Certification

(Conway, SC) 03/13/2023

dental hygiene faculty standing in the lobby

(left to right) Callie Poland, Associate Professor for Dental Sciences; Brooke Cox, Instructor for Dental Sciences; Cynthia Pierce, Instructor for Dental Sciences; Marlene Madrid Melendez, Professor for Dental Sciences; Jennifer Estabrook, Professor for Dental Sciences; Nicole Mattingly, Instructor for Dental Sciences; Michelle Meeker, Program Director and Chair for Dental Sciences; Not pictured: Dr. Theresa Walls, Instructor for Dental Sciences.

Horry-Georgetown Technical College (HGTC) dental hygiene faculty completed certification in local anesthesia infiltration and laser training, enabling faculty to deliver and oversee the practice in the department’s dental hygiene clinic. The training also enhances the department’s ability to guide students in the clinical setting. Both procedures are in the scope of practice for students, and now all faculty are certified to teach both.

“We are proud to announce that all faculty members have completed the local anesthesia training and certification, in addition to laser certification. Our dental team is committed to enhancing student learning outcomes and will continue to do so with lifelong learning through continuing education” said Michelle Meeker, HGTC Program Director and Chair of Dental Sciences.

HGTC offers a variety of dental services to the community through its two public clinics serving 2,500 patients annually. Located in a state-of-the-art facility, these dental clinics allow HGTC to provide top-quality dental care at an affordable price. HGTC’s Dental Hygiene Clinic has specialized in providing thorough intraoral and extraoral assessments, cleanings, and X-Rays for our community since 1998. These procedures are performed by our Dental hygiene students, who are supervised by their professors. A Staff Dentist is present and available for consultation purposes to advise of any additional dental treatments that may be needed.

HGTC offers a vital, low-cost option for dental cleanings. Utilizing a waitlist, patients who are available to come on short notice may speed up their wait for an appointment. HGTC students are also welcomed to make appointments for dental services. Dental cleaning appointments are three to four hours long and patients often require more than one appointment to complete their cleaning. Commitment to appointments is vital to the continued success of our students. Patients are treated two days a week during the college semesters. Call 843-839-1070 or email dental.clinic@hgtc.edu for more information.

The Associate in Applied Science in Dental Hygiene degree prepares students to provide direct patient care in the detection and prevention of oral diseases under the supervision of a dentist, as required by law. The dental hygienist's major role is as an educator and includes designing dental hygiene treatment and education for patients on an individual basis. Graduates of this program are qualified to evaluate patient medical histories, take and record blood pressure, chart conditions of periodontal disease and suspected decay for diagnosis by the dentist, conduct oral-cancer screening examinations, educate the patient on the latest techniques of oral home care, and perform a thorough cleaning of the patients' teeth. A dental hygienist is also qualified to apply sealants and fluoride for the prevention of decay, to expose and develop radiographs, and to provide nutritional counseling for dental patients.

Students in the Dental Hygiene program receive their education in a state-of-the-art Dental Clinic on the Grand Strand campus, under the direct supervision of licensed dentists and hygienists. Graduates are eligible to take national and state board examinations. After successful completion of these examinations, graduates will be licensed and recognized as a Registered Dental Hygienist.