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Free teeth cleaning for Milwaukee elementary students

Posted: 9:12 PM, Mar 09, 2020
Updated: 2020-03-09 22:12:53-04

MILWAUKEE — Elementary students at Rocketship Southside Community Prep got a special visit from a few dental hygienists from the Marquette University School of Dentistry.

"We go to 35 different schools, elementary K through eight schools, and we provide preventative services for children. So we provide cleaning, sealants, dental sealants, and fluoride treatments for children along with oral health instructions," Monika Brand-Barfi, a dental hygienist with Marquette University, said.

Out of 520 students at the school, about half of them will receive free teeth cleaning. The principal of the school said this is an essential service that extends beyond the classroom.

"For many of our families access to dental care is not something they have readily available or something that even with health insurance they can afford," Madeline Hawkins, the principal at Rocketship Southside Community Prep in Milwaukee, said.

Hawkins added that poor oral hygiene could impact a student's performance.

"We know that dental hygiene is incredibly important. If a student comes to school with a sore tooth or something, that has a huge impact on their ability to learn," Hawkins said.

The hygienists have been at the school for a few days, and their last day will be on Tuesday, March 10.

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