Dental Hygiene Students Showcase Clinical Research Presentations

Nov 7, 2023Dalton Bright
Dental Hygiene Presentations

Wallace State Dental Hygiene students pose for a group photo before sharing their clinical research presentations.

Hanceville, AL — Students in the Wallace State Community College Dental Hygiene program recently showcased their clinical research presentations in the Bailey Center Auditorium. After months of preparation and research, the students were able to display their hard work to an audience of peers and faculty. 

“The second-year dental hygiene students selected 12 topics related to new techniques, technology, or best practices. They researched their topics and presented their findings to fellow students as well as over 100 of our program’s alumni, faculty, and guests,” said clinical instructor Susan Brewer. 

Following registration for the event, the names of attendees were drawn at random and door prizes were awarded. There were just over 200 people in total in attendance, many of whom were alumni. 

“Our Clinical Research Presentations are an annual continuing education event hosted for our alumni,” said Brewer. “I am so excited to see so many of them in attendance here today.” 

The presentations are put on as a continuing education (CE) event for practicing hygienists to attend. Dental hygienists in Alabama are required to have 12 hours of CE credit yearly.   

The subjects of the presentations ranged from traditional dental hygiene topics to more complex, interpersonal topics. Some of the presentation topics included oral cancer, fluoride, laser therapy, and sealants. Also, among the topics presented were the effects of vaping on the oral cavity, overcoming dental anxiety and safely dealing with mental health as a dental hygienist. 

Dental Hygiene Research PresentationWallace State Dental Hygiene students Lesli Acosta Belford, left, and Ashton Mariner present their slideshow on ways to balance being pregnant and working as a dental hygienist. 

Dental hygiene students Lesli Acosta Belford and Ashton Mariner shared a presentation titled “The Pregnant Hygienist.” Belford and Mariner interviewed actual pregnant dental hygienists and included their suggestions on ways to mitigate issues commonly associated with pregnancy, from issues such as back pain to the federal law protecting the rights of pregnant employees. 

The Dental Hygiene program at Wallace State is an associate degree program that can be completed in five semesters. Wallace State’s dental programs boast a top-notch reputation with an outstanding 90 percent licensure rate and an award-winning faculty. One hundred percent of Wallace State students find employment in the field upon graduation with 80 percent finding employment within the first three months post-graduation.  

The Wallace State Dental Hygiene Clinic specializes in providing preventative oral health care for members of the community at a discounted cost. The clinic is located in the Health Science Building on campus and all treatment is provided by dental hygiene students who are supervised by dentists and the college’s licensed dental hygiene faculty. The care provided by student hygienists is also an opportunity for practical experience and counts as one of their clinical sessions. Adult dental cleanings are $30, but there is no fee for services provided to children aged 18 and under or pregnant women. Cleanings at the clinic also include x-rays, a doctor’s exam and fluoride treatment. Through the Alabama Department of Public Health, free preventative services are offered to pregnant women and children 18 and under.  

Clinic days vary depending upon the semester. Appointment times are from 8:00-10:30 and 12:00-2:30. Please call 256-352-8300 to schedule an appointment.  

The Wallace State Dental programs, which include Dental Assisting and Dental Hygiene, will hold an information session on Wednesday, Nov. 15 at 1:30 p.m., in the Health Science Building. Visit to register for the event. 

For more information on the Wallace State Dental programs contact Corey Weeks at 256.352.8300 or visit 

Registration for the Spring 2024 semester is currently underway, with classes beginning Jan 8 for regular and Mini Term I and March 6 for Mini Term II. Registration for Flex Start I courses will be held Jan. 13-19, with classes starting Jan. 15 and registration for Flex Start II courses will be held Jan. 20-26, with classes starting Jan. 22. Visit to apply and register for classes.   

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