TAMWORTH — Tamworth Dental Center and School Smiles has announced the appointment of Denise Bailey as the new School Smiles dental coordinator.
The Tamworth Dental Clinics and School Smiles is a Tri-County Community Action Program, which provides dental care to over 2,500 people, from Carroll County, Coos County, Grafton County and Belknap County. The School Smiles program seeks to improve the oral health of children, as well as their dental experience by providing convenient and reliable school-based dental services to students while at school within a safe and pleasant environment.
Bailey's interests in dentistry started at the age of 16, as a dental assistant student at a vocational high school. After high school, she continued her education and became a dental hygienist in 1997 after graduating ed from Middlesex Community College, Dental Hygiene Program, in 1997. She has practiced in many different areas of dental hygiene in several states, and many different areas of dentistry, including public health and hospital-based positions. She works part-time clinical as a dental hygienist at Massachusetts General Hospital-Division of Dentistry in Boston.
Bailey also holds a bachelor of science in applied studies in health care administration in 2011 from Granite State College. In 2012, and she completed her credentials as a licensed educator through the Massachusetts Department of Education. Bailey has worked as an educator, CPR instructor and dental assisting program developer and is currently completing her master's in education degree at Westfield University.
”Dental hygiene, particularly public health, is my passion,” Bailey says. that ”Visiting schools in the Southern Carroll County and vicinity, providing education, screening, and preventative dental care has been rewarding and fun. I love meeting children and teaching them about their smile. Children’s teeth are meant to last a lifetime, and a healthy smile is important to a child’s self-esteem. With proper care, a balanced diet and regular dental visits, their teeth can remain healthy and strong.”
The focus of School Smiles is the educational component in the classroom with a friendly assessment of students' teeth. “I’m very excited to be able to bring this information right to the students in the school where they are already comfortable and ready to learn,” said Bailey. “We know it is very critical to be a friendly face while educating children about self-care and the battle against sugary treats on our teeth.”
"We are happy to have Denise join our Tamworth Dental Clinic team. Her education, passion and enthusiasm for working with children serves the clinic as well as a representative going into the schools," said Kristy Letendre, Tri-County CAP director of clinical services. "For some clients, the Dental Clinic and School Smiles is the only option for people with Medicaid and Medicare in a geographical radius.
"The oral health preventative and remedial services have a positive impact on the quality of life, and even the employability of our patients," Letendre continued. "We welcome all new child and adult patients, on average 100 new patients a month. Whether self-paying, fully insured or covered by New Hampshire or Maine Medicaid, the Tamworth Dental Clinic accepts most major adult and family dental insurance plans, Care Credit time payment plans, and we offer a reduced rate to low-income individuals without insurance. We work with programs for veterans, Ryan White referrals, New Hampshire Employment program, seniors and two local Department of Corrections inmate programs.
“Dental health is an important focus program of Tri-Community Action Agency, to assist low- to moderate-income families with a range of oral health services,” said Robert Boschen Jr., CEO for Tri-County CAP. “The School Smiles program is important outreach to children and their parents to include dental care as part of their overall health and wellness. According to experts, dental decay is the most common chronic childhood disease. The burden of this issue falls disproportionately on low-income children. A GAO report showed children in poverty have about five times more untreated dental decay.”
Tri-County CAP is a non-profit, multi-program agency with many projects and service locations. For more information, visit tccap.org, or call the central office in Berlin at (603) 752-7001 or the Tamworth Dental Clinic at (603) 323-7645.