Dental - Oral Health Services

Effective March 18th, Cawthon Dental will only provide emergent/urgent dental services; all non-emergency or elective dental procedures will be postponed until further notice.

Our Mission is to Promote, Protect, and Improve the Oral Health for all Shelby County residents. In accomplishing this goal, the Community Health Bureau/Clinical Services- Oral Health Section provides programs for the prevention of oral disease and education to the public regarding the value of good oral health. We believe that dental disease is preventable. That is why we encourage everyone to develop healthy oral health habits by brushing your teeth at least twice a day for a minimum of two minutes, floss daily, eat a healthy balanced diet and see your dentist twice a year for regular check-ups and oral cancer screenings.                                                                                                   Tooth decay is one of the most common chronic conditions throughout the United States, as well as Tennessee, and oral disease has been linked with other chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease. Oral health plays a key role in determining an individual’s quality of life. Poor oral health can influence an individual’s self-esteem, school performance, ability to obtain employment, and school and work attendance.

Oral Health Programs

The Shelby County Health Department Dental Program Consists of Two Services

Cawthon Dental Clinic provides comprehensive dental care for children 1 month through 20 years of age.

  • Dental Exams
  • Cleanings
  • Fluoride Treatments
  • Restorations (fillings); and 
  • Extractions 
  • Limited adult emergency care is also available

Payment Options:
Cash and checks are acceptable forms of payment.
Tenn Care insurance is also accepted.
We have minimum prices available for those patients without insurance.

We require that all patients be a resident of Shelby County.
Photo Identification and proof of residency is required.

Hours of Operation
Monday - Friday (8:00 am - 4:30 pm)
Appointments are available Monday thru Friday, 8:00 am to 3:30 pm


  • School Based Dental Prevention Program

School Based Dental Prevention Program is a statewide; school based preventive dental program targeting children in grades kindergarten through eighth in schools with 50 percent or more of students receiving free and reduced lunch. 

Health education and preventive sealants are provided to the target school population as well as information regarding Tenn Care eligibility and the application process.

The School Based Dental Prevention Program services include:

  • Dental Education
  • Dental Screening
  • Sealant Placement
  • Dental Referrals

According to the Centers for Disease Control, school based dental sealant programs could increase the prevalence of dental sealants and reduce or eliminate oral health disparities among school aged children.