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Dentistry to give free screenings to some children

by UofL Today last modified Jul 22, 2010 03:08 PM

The University of Louisville School of Dentistry will offer free dental screenings for five- and six-year-old children beginning July 23 and continuing through at least Oct. 1.

Screenings will be in the pediatric dentistry clinic, Room 335, 501 S. Preston St., from 8 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Appointments will not be taken; patients should just walk in.

ULSD is offering the service to help community members comply with the Kentucky Dental Screening/Examination law that takes effect this school year. The law requires five- and six-year-old children entering school for the first time to receive a dental screening or examination and to have proof of a dental screening or examination by a dentist, dental hygienist, physician, registered nurse, advanced registered nurse practitioner or physician assistant no later than Jan. 1.

Oral disease is a major health problem for Kentuckians of all ages.

A 2001 state survey found that a high percentage of even very young Kentucky children may be in pain every day from dental decay, a circumstance that could affect overall health and their capacity to learn. These problems often go untreated because they don't get the screenings they need. The legislation is intended to help identify problems so children can have a chance to receive proper treatment.

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