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NMDHA Shines The Light on Melissa Barbara!

(Posted: 06/07/2022)

Melissa Barbara RDH, MS, might be familiar to many due to her position as one of the dental hygiene members currently serving on the New Mexico Board of Dental Health Care (NMBDHC). She has served on the NMBDHC since 2013 and is currently Chair of the Dental Hygienist Committee. When asked why she decided to be on the board she says, “Actually, it kind of fell into my lap and I didn’t quite understand what I was volunteering for, but I did want to do something to ‘give back’ to the public. I was open to the opportunity and I’m so grateful that I was appointed. It’s been one of the greatest privileges of my life.” As a result of being a board member, she has been participating a dental hygiene examiner for various testing agencies (WREB, CRDTS, CDCA) and currently serves in leadership positions within those organizations.


Melissa currently works full-time for CE Zoom as their Regulations Specialist and does occasional temp work. As a result of being a Dental Regulator for years, she says “I have a unique perspective of what it takes to be licensed and I see what happens to people after they have been licensed for years or decades and lose their license. As a result, I’m very passionate about keeping up with continuing education and continued competency.  It’s the only way that we stay safe in our treatment of the public. It is such a vital part of our license that some, unfortunately take for granted.”  


When asked what she does in her free time, she comments, ‘I don’t really have a lot of down time, seems like I’m always doing things for the NMBDHC or traveling for one of the testing agencies, but I like to work out a lot and run. During Covid I started playing my viola again and my teacher gives me lots of viola homework!”  Melissa recently completed the Murph Challenge this past Memorial Day, which is a 1-mile run, 100 pull-ups, 200 push-ups, 300-squats followed by a 1 mile run, wearing a 20 lb. vest. When asked how that went, she said, “Let me first admit that I did modify! I didn’t wear the 20 lb. vest but I did do everything else!”  The Murph Challenge has become a big event in the fitness world to honor those who gave the ultimate sacrifice to this country. I never did this challenge because I just didn’t think I could complete it. However, I felt that it was important to spend time doing this challenge to really be thankful for the freedoms I have.  I completed it in just under an hour. I couldn’t walk for a few days! However, that’s a minimal discomfort compared to what other have given up! I used the opportunity to meditate on all things and people I’m thankful for while I’m on this journey in life.”


When asked what’s next for her future and the future of dental hygiene, she says “Well, our profession is changing in so many ways, I always hope it’s changing for the better and so it important for everyone to be involved in any way they can but its an exciting time and there lots of work to do, but I believe there is room for us all and there are multiple ways to practice that can benefit the public. I try to do the best I can with the resources I have, then pass it off to someone else who will build on what we’ve done, and I believe they will make it even better than I did. That’s how we keep moving forward.”  


NMDHA is thankful for all Melissa has done to “give back” and NMDHA is as privileged to have Melissa as an ADHA member as Melissa is to serve on the NMBDHC!!

Thank you Melissa; you are a true dental hygiene influencer!!

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NMDHA Shines The Light on Professor Demetra Logothetis!

(Posted: 04/19/2022)

At the ADHA Annual Conference in June, Demetra Logothetis RDH, MS will be presented with the Johnson & Johnson Award for Excellence in Dental Hygiene.  This award honors two Dental Hygienists who have active involvement within ADHA and its constituents.  As a recipient of this award, one must exhibit evidence of leadership and passion to advance the profession, with incorporation of any and/or all roles of Dental Hygiene and have a simple impact on the practice and future of the profession.  Read on to learn of the enormous impact Demetria Logothetis has had on the practice and future of the profession of dental hygiene in New Mexico!


Demetra Logothetis is Professor Emeritus at the University of New Mexico (UNM) Department of Dental Medicine.  Professor Logothetis received her Bachelors in Dental Hygiene from UNM and her Masters in Dental Hygiene from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.  Professor Logothetis joined the faculty at UNM in 1986 and became the Director of the Dental Hygiene Program in 1996 where she served as director for 16 years.  Shortly after Professor Logothetis accepted the Program Director position, the program was slated for closure.  Under her leadership, the program was saved from closure.  Due to her outstanding leadership, the program flourished and became an educational and clinical program of excellence, with a multitude of programs.


During her tenure at UNM, Demetria successfully led the effort to elevate the Associate of Science in Dental Hygiene program to an  entry-level Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene program.  She also co-developed and implemented a Master of Science Degree Program in Dental Hygiene at UNM!


Professor Logothetis has published several articles in various dental journals and has written and published five dental hygiene textbooks: Local Anesthesia for the Dental Hygienist (3 editions), Elsevier Publishing; SUCCESS in Dental Hygiene, Pearson Publishing; and High Yield Facts in Dental Hygiene, Pearson Publishing.  She served as editor for many dental hygiene publications and has brought in over 2 million dollars in grants and contracts to the UNM Dental Hygiene Program.


Professor Logothetis received the University of Missouri-Kansas City Outstanding Alumni Achievement Award, the Roy J. Reinhart Professional Excellence and Service Award from the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Dentistry, the University of New Mexico Dental Hygiene Alumnus of the Year Award, the UNM School of Medicine Faculty Teaching Excellence Award, and the UNM School of Medicine Curricular Leadership Award.


Professor Logothetis has served as Chair of the Council of Allied Dental Hygiene Program Directors for the American Dental Education Association as well as President of Sigma Phi Alpha, the National Dental Hygiene Honor Society.  She served on the WREB Clinical Dental Hygiene and Local Anesthesia Committees and several other local and national committees.  Professor Logothetis worked on the Task Force to develop legislation in New Mexico for Collaborative Practice for Dental Hygienists and received a special recognition award from the New Mexico Dental Hygienists’ Association for her dedication to her work on dental hygiene legislation. 

Professor Logothetis has a history of advancing the art and science of dental hygiene and motivating students to do the same.  Through her leadership and example, she has had a powerful impact on  the practice of dental hygiene in New Mexico.  Professor Logothetis is a shining star in the field of dental hygiene and rightfully deserves to be recognized by ADHA as they bestow upon her the Award for Excellence in Dental Hygiene!

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Get ready for Dental Care Month and Oral Health Month!

(Posted: 04/30/2022)
Alison Logee, a Canadian dental hygienist and owner of Dental Hygiene Wellness Center in St-Eugène has combined a love of nature and her work as a dental hygienist into children’s books, written to both entertain children and teach them proper oral hygiene as well as the importance of overall health.
Alison has written 2 children’s picture books (3-7 yrs.) and plans on creating a full series called The Chelsea Squirrel Series.
The first two books, The Treetop Tooth Shop and Chelsea's Flossome Friend, are currently being sold on Alison’s website
See website for details.
Alison says the books are fun adventure stories that inspire children to pick up their toothbrush at an early age and to create a positive relationship with their dental hygienist.
The stories are written in rhyme and are based on true-to-life characters. You can read about these characters in Alison’s very touching story found on her website Here, Alison describes how a tiny squirrel and a mouse that she cared for, inspired 2 of the characters in the book.
Order now for May, Dental Care Month and June, Oral Health Month:
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Mission of Mercy Sept. 2022 - San Juan County

(Posted: 03/12/2022)
Volunteer Registration opens April 5 for New Mexico Mission of Mercy (MOM) in San Juan County to be held on September 23-24, 2022 at McGee Park.
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Oral Health in America: Advances & Challenges

(Posted: 12/22/2021)

December 21, 2021

The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR), released the anticipated "Oral Health in America: Advances and Challenges." This is only the 2nd comprehensive document on this topic and the first in 20+ years! Several dental hygienists contributed to the report including ADHA CEO Ann Battrell, MSDH, as a scientific reviewer. ADHA members who were contributing authors include: Cynthia C. Amyot, RDH, EdE; Christine M. Blue, BSDH, MS, DHSc; Sharon Clough, RDH, MS Ed; Matt Crespin, MPH, RDH; Christine Farrell, RDH BSDH, MPA; Hannah Maxey, PhD, MPH, RDH; and Cheryl Westphal Theile, RDH, EdD. Look for highlights from the report in coming weeks. Meantime, find the Executive Summary at:

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NMDHA Donations/Payments

(Posted: 05/28/2019)

Click below to donate or make payments to NMDHA!