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Administration of Local Anesthesia for the Dental Hygienist

Course Description

This course has two (2) major components:

Component 1: Theory and Foundation Preparation: The online didactic course reviews the procedures available for the management of pain and anxiety. Principles of local anesthesia will include anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, armamentarium, technique and complications. This is done at your own pace and accomplished in an online format. It consists of 15 modules, which are sequentially ordered. All online modules must be completed before the face-to-face lab.

Component 2: Face-to-Face Laboratory Portion: This is held at University of Tennessee Health Science Center, in Memphis Tennessee on a Friday afternoon from 1:00 pm — 5:00 pm and Saturday from 8:00 am — 5:00 pm. On Friday, the theory and foundational information will be reviewed and you will complete a comprehensive examination. On Saturday, you will come to UTHSC Dunn Dental Building, Memphis, TN for clinical practice in delivering local anesthesia.

Date and Registration

October 8-9, 2021

Location: The University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis TN 38163

  • Friday Class: General Education Building, Room A303, 8 S. Dunlap St.
  • Saturday Class: Dunn Dental Building, 5th Floor Lab, 875 Union Ave.

Parking: Madison Plaza Garage (H Lot) located at 940 Madison Ave. - $5/day. Metered parking is also available for a cost along S. Dunlap, East, & Beale Streets. Note: Dean's Lot (N Lot) located behind Dunn Dental Bldg. and the Dental Patient Lot (O Lot) located southwest of building are free on weekends only.

Register:  Course Registration Form  and online registration

Course Presenters: Drs. Bobby Collins and Cassandra Holder-Christiansen

Course Goal

The goal of this course is to prepare the practicing dental hygienist to assist the dentist in alleviating and managing patient's dental pain and anxiety. The dental hygienist will be provided background knowledge in how nerve impulses are propagated and blocked, and the mechanics of local anesthetic administration.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course the dental hygiene participant will:

  • Understand the philosophy and psychology of local anesthesia,
  • Evaluate a patient's medical history and physical status including measurement of vital signs,
  • Evaluate indications and contraindications for use of local anesthesia,
  • Identify anatomical landmarks that pertain to administration of local anesthesia,
  • Understand the physiology of nerve conduction,
  • Understand the pharmacology of local anesthetics and vasoconstrictors,
  • Be able to select and prepare the proper armamentaria for the administration of local anesthesia,
  • Properly record the administration of local anesthetic procedures and complications,
  • Be able to manage common medical emergencies as related to the administration of local
  • Recognize and manage post-injection complications and reactions to injections,
  • Employ infection control techniques including disposal of sharps,
  • Administer local anesthetic agents with emphasis on: technique, aspiration, slow injection, and minimum effective dosage,
  • Recognize, and manage toxic reactions to local anesthetics and vasoconstrictors,
  • Recognize, and manage allergic reactions to local anesthetics and vasoconstrictors,
  • Calculate highest safe dose based on patient's weight and/or age,
  • Determine the need for reinjection,
  • Administer local anesthesia for infiltration,
  • Administer local anesthesia for nerve blockage,
  • Monitor the patient's physical status while under the effects of local anesthetics.

Required Items

Required texts may be ordered online: Handbook of Local Anesthesia, current edition by Malamed, Stanley F., Mosby, & CD. Supplemental material provided online.

Required clinical supplies (must bring to face-to-face lab): Syringe, clinic jacket, and safety glasses

Tuition and CE Credit

$1,000/per attendee; 35 credit hours

This is a limited attendance course. Applications will be accepted in order of receipt. Application and $500 deposit fee is required for access to the online course material, with final payment due one month prior to the first day of the face-to-face class.

Course Presenters

Dr. Bobby Collins

Dr. Bobby Collins is a Tennessee licensed dentist and adjunct faculty member at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in the department of dental hygiene. He practiced general dentistry for nearly thirty years. He served on the Tennessee Board of Dentistry 1988-1995 (President, 1993). He served as a member of SRTA from 1988-1995.

His educational background includes:

  • DDS University of Iowa
  • MST Memphis State University
  • BS Biology-Memphis State University

Dr. Cassandra Christiansen

Dr. Cassandra Christiansen is a Tennessee licensed dental hygienist, and an associate professor at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. She has 15 years of clinical dental hygiene experience, 7 years of dental assisting experience, and over 25 years of dental hygiene education experience.

Her educational background includes:

  • EdD University of Memphis
  • MPA Memphis State University
  • BS Tennessee State University
  • AS Tennessee State University & Meharry Medical College

Last Published: Jul 2, 2021