Sherri Lukes, RDH, MS, and Southern Illinois University Students on a Mission

Posted on July 19, 2016

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For the past 15 years, Sherri Lukes has been traveling to Central Mexico to provide preventive dental services to area villagers. Accompanied by Dental Hygiene students from Southern Illinois University, where Lukes was tenured faculty for 25 years, a team provides debridement, dental sealants and fluoride varnish applications for adults and children during a trip every summer. The number of patients served varies from year to year, according to number of students and additional faculty participating in the experience. In May of 2016, five SIU students and one faculty member participated in the trip hosted by Lukes’ church, serving approximately 175 people in four different villages.

Adult patients have had little preventive care and present with very heavy supra- and subgingival calculus deposits. American Eagle XP® Technology instruments were a phenomenal asset during this year’s trip….a game changer for sure! We were fighting over them when they came out of the sterilizer! The SIU faculty was convinced by the end of the week that XP technology instruments NEED to become an addition to student kits at Southern Illinois University. As the only baccalaureate Dental Hygiene program in Illinois, XP technology and the technique for appropriate use should be implemented into the Dental Hygiene curriculum for treating patients in the advanced periodontics course senior year.