August 28, 2015

How to Get Free Dental Care in Utah (that isn’t Scary)

When is a trip to the dentist not the worst thing ever? When it’s free!

The scene is a grisly one: I lie supine in a brightly lit room while a masked female wielding a wicked-looking metal object instructs me not to move. The area is full of strange instruments and various chemicals, and I can hear the muffled whimper of a child in the other room–for him it must already be too late. As she dons gloves and approaches me, I gulp in anxiety, but she has already attached a sinister device that drains my mouth of saliva and my heart of hope. Before I can scream “Geneva Conventions” she is upon me and begins her twisted procedure.

This is not a scene from the final days of a Gitmo interrogation chamber. I am at the dentist’s office. And in reality, my dramatic introduction could not be farther from the truth: I’m actually having a pretty good time.

Now don’t get me wrong, going to the dentist is at about the same spot on my list of fun things to do as waiting in line at the DMV and filing my taxes, but there is one thing that makes this visit almost pleasant enough to actually be enjoyable: it’s totally free.

Times are tough, and one way to save money is to take advantage of the many services offered by local students who are willing to work for free in order to get experience. This week I visit the Utah College of Dental Hygiene in Orem in search of quality, free dental care. Though the prospect of “student” dental care might seem frightening, my experience was universally positive, and I would highly recommend it to everyone.

dental hygienist student

Chelsie is a second year student at UCDH

My hygienist’s name is Chelsie, and though she is second-year student, you would never know it, since she is knowledgeable, professional, and highly competent. We start off with a full set of x-rays, and then she leads me back to the dental chair and explains the cleaning and fluoride procedures she is about to administer.

The Utah College of Dental Hygiene is a private, two year program that prepares students to become dental hygienists. Second-year students have the chance to work in their on-site clinic and offer free care to the public to gain experience in the field. The facilities are state-of-the-art, and Chelsie tells me that since manufacturers are eager to promote their latest and greatest products, the college actually is actually better equipped with more cutting-edge gear than most of the dental offices in the state.

As Chelsie works, a roaming supervisor, who is an experienced and licensed hygienist, checks on her periodically to answer any questions she or I may have.

I ask her if there is any bad blood between the school and local dentist offices, since they could be potentially taking clients from them, but she tells me that, “dentists feel bad that they can’t help everyone.” The school is a place they can send uninsured people where they know they will get good care for free. Therefore, she says there is no competition, “We’re looking for people in need who don’t have access to regular dental care.”

Something I find particularly interesting is how desperate the students are for patients. Apparently, word on the free clinic has yet to get out. In order to pass their board certification (think of it as a final exam for hygienists), students need to have someone to work on to prove their competence on a specific day in front of an examination panel. The thing is, students are not allowed to test on someone with good teeth–they need something challenging. This requirement leads to a strange phenomenon: the desperate students are paying people to let them clean their teeth. We’re not talking about chump change, either. Chelsie says that some of the girls will pay in excess of several hundred dollars if they find someone with particularly bad teeth who will agree to come in for their exam.

dental hygienist

All dressed up and no teeth to clean

While x-rays, cleaning, and fluoride treatments are free, they do not fill cavities or perform any other advanced procedures. However, if you do need these, conveniently located next door is a “half price” dental clinic. There are no students there, only real dentists, and they can do all the things the students cannot for about half the cost of a regular clinic.

Now I should mention that although the services I received were free, there is technically a $5 instrument sterilization fee I did have to pay. This money is an OSHA requirement and is not charged by the school. However, that five bucks got me the most thorough dental care I have ever received, and was certainly worth every penny.

The final word is this is deal that you cannot possibly go wrong with. It is free dental care with cutting-edge gear, and, if your oral hygiene is disgusting enough, they might even end up paying you!

If you are interested in visiting the Utah College of Dental Hygiene, check out their website.
Some other Utah schools that offer free or cheap dental care are the following:

Related Stories: Earning and Saving Money in Tough Times


  1. Hello my dear people , I am Anita Frank, currently living in New jersey city, USA. I am a widow at the moment with three kids and i was stuck in a financial situation in April 2015 and i needed to refinance and pay my bills. I tried seeking loans from various loan firms both private and corporate but never with success, and most banks declined my credit ,do not full prey to those hoodlums at there that call them self money lender they are all scam , all they want is your money and you well not hear from them again they have done it to me twice before I met Mr. Wilson Edwards the most interesting part of it is that my loan was transfer to me within 74hours so I will advice you to contact Mr. Edwards if you are interested in getting loan and you are sure you can pay him back on time you can contact him via email……… (

  2. Good Day !!

    I am Hwa Jurong, a Reputable, Legitimate & an accredited money
    Lender. I want to use this medium to inform you that i render reliable beneficiary
    assistance as I'll be glad to offer you a loan at 2% interest rate to
    reliable individuals.

    Services Rendered include:

    *Home Improvement
    *Inventor Loans
    *Car Loans
    *Debt Consolidation Loan
    *Line of Credit
    *Second Loan
    *Business Loans
    *Personal Loans
    *International Loans.

    Please write back if interested.
    Upon Response, you'll be mailed a Loan application form to fill. (No social
    security and no credit check, 100% Guaranteed!) I Look forward permitting me to
    be of service to you. You can contact me via
    Yours Sincerely,

    Hwa Jurong(MD).

  3. Hello,

    Here comes an Affordable loan that will change your life for ever, I am Dr. Robert Jack a certified loan lender, I offer loan to individual and public sector that are in need of financial Assistance in a low interest rate of 2%. Bad credit acceptable,The Terms and Conditions are very simple and considerate.You will never regret anything in this loan transaction because i will make you smile. Our company has recorded a lot of breakthroughs in the provision of first class financial services to our clients, especially in the area of Loan syndication and capital provision for individuals and companies. We have brought ailing industries back to life and we back good business ideas by providing funds for their up start. We have a network of Investors that are willing to provide funds of whatever amount to individuals and organizations to start business and operations.i want you to understand the fact that i Dr. Robert Jack is out to help the less financial privilege get back on track by providing all type of loans to them (E.G) mortgages, home loans business loans and bad credit loans commercial loans, start-up- working capital loans, construction loans ,car loans, hotel loans,and student loans what are you waiting for asap why don't you try Dr. Robert Jack Loan home and be free from debts any interested client should contact me asap (

  4. i have broken teeth thats hurting my eyes and very much in pain
    i need some help to get some free dental care
    email me please

  5. my name is james benefield I have no insurance and I'm currently unemployed I am missing my front teeth and it's not very appealing to people I would like to try and get them replaced I have no money so free if you may be able to help me my email address is benefieldjim @

  6. my name is james benefield I have no insurance and I'm currently unemployed I am missing my front teeth and it's not very appealing to people I would like to try and get them replaced I have no money so free if you may be able to help me my email address is benefieldjim @

  7. Hey ive been having very bad tooth pain to the point that I cant sleep or eat and have no insurance and very little money for a dentist I know of 4 of my teeth need to be pulled. I need help its getting to the point that im crying can I please get help I can't find a dentist that is willing to work with me out in magna or in west valley city

  8. I am disabled & have severe dental problems abscesses & chipped teeth.. Damage to my teeth is the result of my medicine I have had to take for about 15 years & now I’m suffering not just with my disability but also my teeth.. I HV Medicaid (traditional) & Medicare & am on social security a very very low income I just really need some help in finding a dentist who cares & could possible help & work out payments.. Just inquiring for some advice I am only 46 & am trying to get surgery on my back & neck to get back to work & get off of disability if possible per Dr’s they don’t see any way of surgery helping but I’m trying to b positive & hopeful.. My bad teeth are making me quite I’ll & extremely ashamed & depressed. Please help & send any information or advice I really would appreappreciate it thnx, m.DIANTONIO

  9. Hi everyone,

    I am currently a student at Utah College of Dental Hygiene. If anyone would like a cleaning, please do not hesitate to reply back to this message! :)

  10. Anonymous says:
  11. Anonymous says:
  12. Anonymous says:
  13. I have a tooth that need to be extracted I have some money I am currently laid off please contact me by email in pain thanks

  14. Rachel Church says:

    Looking for affordable dental extractions and affordable dentures. senior citizen and part time employed.

  15. Lyndsey Lafay says:

    801-426-8234. Call the school. We would love to help everyone!!!

  16. Lyndsey Lafay says:

    801-426-8234. Call the school. We would love to help everyone!!!

  17. rita martinez says:

    I have two teeth that I believe I have an absest when I went to the E.R I have very little money I have four children. And work at burger king. If youn can help please contact me asap.. thanks!!!

    • Hi Rita,

      I am currently a student at Utah College of Dental Hygiene and would be more than happy to see you and your children for cleanings if needed! It will also include x-rays, intra oral examination, extra oral examination, fluoride, sealants, and a dental exam. Feel free to email me!

      Thank you!

  18. Betty Geurts says:

    I have several teeth that I need RTC and crowns on, I’m on a limited budget with a special needs child that I spend all of my time and money caring for. I am in constant pain and I need to get some relief soon. I have been to the ER a few times for dental pain.

  19. I Ned help I’m in pain bad can’t take it no more please I Ned help and don’t have much money but I have too ask for help please contact me 8016864454

  20. Craig Reid says:

    I have had a bad drug problem that I have finally kicked but it has left me with a terrible teeth problems or let call it a disaster instead I need teeth pulled and plates formed I have very very little money can you help?

Speak Your Mind

Plugin from the creators ofBrindes Personalizados :: More at PlulzWordpress Plugins