Why pay hundreds when the cost of a routine cleaning at the Dental Hygiene Clinic at Mohave Community College—Bullhead City campus is $25 dollars for adults and $15 for a child cleaning?

   The clinic is open to the public and services are performed under the supervision of fully licensed faculty members – four of whom are graduates of the program – while providing hands-on instruction to students.

   “What you save in dollars, takes a little more time,” said Tracy Gift, RDH, MS, director of dental education programs at MCC. A 1986 graduate of the Dental Hygiene Program at Fairleigh Dickinson University School of Dentistry with a bachelors and master’s degree from Youngstown State University, Gift has 30 years of practice and says that the extra time taken is actually worth the wait.

   “Although patient appointments do take more time at the clinic because it is a teaching facility, all work is overseen and checked by dentists and instructors, so patients receive the best care available. We also take the time to teach patients how to best care for their teeth,” said Gift.

   In addition, Gift said that because students are learning not only technical skills but also best practices in patient care, people who experience fear and anxiety receive the extra time and attention they need to relax.

    “We listen to our patients and give them a say in their treatment,” said Gift. Consequently, we’re often able to turn all those negative emotions into a positive experience as we build a relationship with our patients.”

    With many insurance plans offering little to no dental coverage, the Dental Hygiene Clinic at MCC provides dental care for people who may have few other options available.

   Although the dental program at MCC is not designed to take the place of a periodic examination and diagnosis by a dentist, it does provide a low-cost option for many patients while providing dental students with valuable, hands-on training.