Navy Dentists Visit Tinian Elementary School

Seamen Jeffrey M. Ker, left, and Joshua M. Dalton, right, use a toy dinosaur to show proper tooth brushing techniques Dec. 5 at Tinian Elementary School during Exercise Forager Fury 2012. The class was given to properly educate the students on the importance of oral hygiene at a young age. After the class, toothbrushes and floss were passed out. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. J. Gage Karwick)

Seamen Jeffrey M. Ker, left, and Joshua M. Dalton, right, use a toy dinosaur to show proper tooth brushing techniques Dec. 5 at Tinian Elementary School during Exercise Forager Fury 2012. The class was given to properly educate the students on the importance of oral hygiene at a young age. After the class, toothbrushes and floss were passed out. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. J. Gage Karwick)

Story by Lance Cpl. Joseph Karwick
Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni

Navy dental personnel gave a dental hygiene class at Tinian Elementary School Dec. 5 during Exercise Forager Fury 2012.

The class was given to educate the students on measures that can be taken to promote healthy dental hygiene.

“Today we wanted to give an overall education on oral hygiene as well as oral screenings for the elementary school kids.” Said Lt. Cmdr. Michael Flannery, a general dentist with 11th Dental Company, 3rd Dental Battalion, 3rd Marine Logistics Group, III Marine Expeditionary Force. “We actually went to every classroom and gave presentations and discussions and handed out toothbrushes and floss.”

The dental personnel also asked the students if they had any pain in their teeth. If they did, the dentists gave them a quick examination and requested that their teachers contact their parents to schedule a dental appointment.

“We tried to identify the kids that currently have pain in their mouth or have infections that I would like to treat while here on Tinian,” said Flannery.

There are approximately 15 classes in the elementary school and the Navy doctors made their way from room to room giving classes and examining students.

“The kids were very excited to see the dentist,” said Jennifer Sannicolas, a multi age class teacher with Tinian Elementary School. “Even just the sight of them on campus got the kids excited.”

The visit to the elementary school is just one of many community relations events coordinated by the Navy medical and Marine Aircraft Group 12 personnel participating in Forager Fury. Medical and dental care will be available on Tinian for the duration of the exercise which is scheduled to conclude Dec. 19.

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