Your Money: Cheap dental cleanings

RALEIGH The cleanings are done by students enrolled in Wake Tech's dental hygiene program. One of the instructors, Brenda Maddox says, "We do cleanings for patients and we see anywhere from 4-years old and up."

If you are interested in being a patient, it starts with a pre-screening and patients are matched with students depending on the level of care they need.

Maddox says, "When they screen the patients, they decide how much tarter they have on their teeth and what their gums look like."

If needed, X-rays are included in the $20 fee. However, the trade off for the reduced cost is time. Don't expect to have pearly whites within an hour. Maddox adds, "For the most part, patients come in for three to five visits to be able to get all the work done and they're about three to four hour visits each."

Faculty members keep a close eye on the progress . Maddox says, "We do a lot of one on one training with the students. Plus the faculty all check behind what the students does." There are even three different dentists on hand at the clinic to handle what the students can't. Maddox says the dentists do referrals, can diagnose problems or administer any anesthesia that's needed to numb the patients for the cleanings.

There are a limited number of patients needed each semester, so you could end up on a waiting list. To schedule an appointment at the Wake Tech Dental Hygiene Department's clinic, call 919-747-0126. The clinic is located at 2901 Holston Lane Raleigh, NC 27610.

If your teeth need work like a filling or a tooth pulled, make sure you get that taken care of first. The students at the clinic are available to clean your teeth and give you a bright smile.

For more money saving ideas, check out Troubleshooter Diane Wilson's blog at

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