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FirstHealth Dental Care Employee Named a 2022 Outstanding Dental Hygienist
| Date Posted: 12/16/2022
BISCOE - For dental hygienist Rebecca “Reba” Mauldin, RDH, caring for patients goes far beyond oral health.
Mauldin, a hygienist at FirstHealth Dental Care, was named a 2022 Outstanding Dental Hygienist by America’s ToothFairy. She was nominated by Sharon Nicholson Harrell, DDS, MPH, FAGD, FirstHealth chief diversity officer and director of FirstHealth Dental Care, for consistently helping her patients with their mental and social needs in addition to their dental needs.
America’s ToothFairy selects five award recipients from across the country to honor during Dental Hygiene Month each October. Winners are chosen for their work going above and beyond to help underprivileged kids in their communities.
Mauldin has worked at FirstHealth Dental Care since the safety-net clinic opened nearly 25 years ago. She said she first became interested in dentistry as a teenager.
“I always wanted to do something in the health field,” she said. “I thought if I could make it easier for someone else to get through their visit at the dentist, and feel better about themselves, it would be worthwhile and rewarding.”
Engaging with patients and putting them at ease is one of Mauldin’s strengths, and she is known for helping individuals access resources to navigate a variety of situations. When one patient was facing eviction from her residence after the death of her parents, Mauldin obtained legal counsel and resources to help the individual remain in her home. Her ability to extend care beyond dentistry has impacted numerous patients. When one of her young patients was considering suicide, Mauldin contacted mental health professionals at the individual’s high school.
“I enjoy creating a trusting and comfortable atmosphere with my patients,” she said. “Working with kids is a true blessing, because you don’t know what someone is going through and how you may make a difference in their life by being there to listen.”
Dr. Harrell said she thought Mauldin was a perfect fit for the award and was proud to nominate her.
“Reba truly cares about the whole patient and will do everything in her power to help where she can,” she said. “She is such an asset to the team and so deserving of this recognition. We are grateful for her generous, hardworking spirit.”
After living all over the East Coast as a child, Mauldin settled in Moore County with her husband shortly after finishing college. She said they both fell in love with the area and have raised their two sons here. Mauldin said she is humbled to have been chosen for the Outstanding Dental Hygienist award.
“Dr. Harrell and my coworkers are like family and I don’t know what I would do without each and every one of them. I’m truly blessed beyond measure.”
FirstHealth Dental Care has provided care to more than 30,000 underserved children in Montgomery County. Services include preventive dental sealants, cleanings, exams, fillings, extractions and spacers.
FirstHealth Dental Care is located on the campus of East Middle School at 195 Camelot Court in Biscoe and on the campus of West Middle School at 131 N.C. Highway 109 S. in Mt. Gilead. To learn more, visit www.firsthealth.org or call (910) 571-5700.