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Tribal Dental Clinics Switch Focus from Restorative to Preventive With Big Results

The Tribal health clinics in Polson and St. Ignatius, Montana, also provide the area’s residents with dental care. When the clinics added a pediatric dentist, David Burke, DMD, MPH, to their dental team, he moved the focus away from restorative care to a prevention approach, and the results have been significant. Before Burke’s arrival, the clinics were without a pediatric dentist for more than a year. The Tribal health centers had a No Cavity Club that offered rewards to children who presented at exams caries-free but only five or six children per month were members. With Burke’s emphasis on caries risk assessment and oral hygiene education as well as a boost in the rewards offered at the No Cavity Club, the number of children without caries has grown to 60 to 75 per month. Click here to read more.

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