UB student Nona Khadivi presenting her team’s research, which won first prize at the American Dental Hygienists’ Association annual conference.

A team from Fones School of Dental Hygiene at the University of Bridgeport has been awarded $1000 by the American Dental Hygienists’ Association (ADHA) through support of GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare for its research into alternative health care and its potential for promoting oral health.

Nona Khadavi and co-researchers Cristina Ayala and Maria Donayre were awarded $1,000 after winning first place at the ADHA’s student research poster competition. The contest was held during the association’s 90th annual meeting.

They were advised by Fones professor Sandra Stramoski. During their research, they sought to assess resident dental hygienists’ (RDHs) awareness of alternative medicine, specifically the role that probiotics may have in promoting oral health.

Probiotics are certain kinds of live bacteria found in foods and supplements that are believed to be salubrious to the mouth, gums, and body.

The UB student researchers found that nearly eight out of 10 RDHs were did not know enough about probiotics or their effect on oral health. Nevertheless, 64 percent were willing to recommend their use to patients.

Fones School also received a $1,000 award from the ADHA.

Media contact: Leslie Geary, (203) 576-4625, lgeary@bridgeport.edu