Contact: Cherie Ronayne
Office of Institutional Communications
cronayne [at] qcc.mass.edu
WORCESTER – Quinsigamond Community College’s dental hygiene clinic is now providing important free “Toothprints” to area children and teens who are treated at the dental clinic.
Toothprints are made of a thermoplastic material that registers the bite imprint of a person. This imprint is much like a fingerprint, in that it is unique to every individual and can serve as a means of identification. Further, the toothprint harbors the patient’s saliva, which can provide DNA evidence of the person in cases where DNA identification is needed. The saliva in the toothprint also acts as a strong “scent tracer” for trained search dogs.
“Experts say that if toothprints were available, Elizabeth Smart could have been found much sooner,” stated Jane Gauthier, Coordinator of Dental Programs at QCC, referring to the missing child case of Elizabeth Smart in Colorado. “It is very inexpensive, fast, and easy.”
Children and teens mold their toothprint after their scheduled treatment and take it with them upon leaving. The process is simple and comfortable for the child. Quinsigamond is proud to be able to offer this important identification method to its young patients. On the morning of February 20, some children from the Worcester area will be among the first to receive toothprints from QCC’s dental clinic.
“I think is a great public service that we offer to our patients. We are hoping to be able to expand this service to the schools in Worcester County very soon,” added Gauthier.
Quinsigamond Community College is the most affordable higher education in Worcester County. As a regional leader in education and workforce development, QCC serves the diverse educational needs of Central Massachusetts by providing affordable, accessible, and high quality programming leading to transfer, career, and lifelong learning.