July 01, 2010

Free dental care for kids available this summer

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Southern Illinois children can get the dental care to help them have healthy smiles courtesy of the Southern Illinois University Carbondale Dental Hygiene Program.

Several preventive dental care sessions are set at locations throughout the region in coming weeks. The free program includes visual oral examinations by Dr. Dwayne Summers, director of the Dental Hygiene Program. The University’s dental hygiene students will also provide teeth cleaning, fluoride treatment and sealant application.

Children ages 3-18 are eligible. The program enables children to comply with state requirements for oral examinations if they are entering kindergarten, second or sixth grades.

The 2010 SIUC summer children’s dental program schedule includes:

• July 6, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Perry County Health Department office at 109 S. Division St., Du Quoin.

• July 13, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., New Zion Missionary Baptist Church, 803 N. Robert Stalls Ave., Carbondale.

• July 20, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Boyton Street Community Center, 501 W. Boyton St, Marion.

• July 27, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Du Quoin Elementary/Middle School’s Summer Lunch Program, 945 E. Jackson St., Du Quoin.

• Aug. 3, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Murphysboro Youth and Recreation Center, 1818 W. Walnut St., Murphysboro.

This program essentially provides preventive dental care but the SIUC Community Dental Clinic can help children in need of more extensive oral care assistance. While the goal is assuring available dental care for children eligible for free or reduced-price school lunches, all children are welcome. No appointments are necessary.