Young Health Service Farewells The Toothfairy

IMAGE: Dot Mulquiney, otherwise known as The Toothfairy, retires from her role as Young Senior Dental Therapist. (Left to right - Donna Cummins, Sharon Rentoule, Michelle Maloney, Dot Mulquiney, Bronwyn Lyon and Mary Jolliffe.

One mum’s words to an anxious little child - “If the tooth fairy were real, her name would be Dot.”

That would be Dot Mulquiney, the Young Senior Dental Therapist resigning from her role with the Murrumbidgee Local Health District after an astounding 43 years of service.

Loved by her patients and colleagues alike, Dot was given a retirement morning tea attended by past and present team members and Young Cluster Manager Joanne Garlick who said Dot would be missed.

“Dot is loved and respected by so many work colleagues, parents and children in the community and I know she will be sadly missed,” Ms Garlick said.

“We thank her for her dedication and contribution to the dental health needs the Young community and surrounds over the past 43 years.”

Dot attained her National Certificate in Dental Therapy at The Westmead School of Dental Therapy in 1978.

Dot began her working career in Goulburn after relocating to Young where she was assigned to the Dental Health Clinic at the Young Public School grounds.

“My assistant and I were initially based at the school, but we travelled at all outlying schools within the district to deliver oral health care to the children,” Dot said.

“Back then it was sometimes the only opportunity for children to be assessed and played a crucial role in keeping young mouths healthy.”

“We worked from a transportable van for follow-up appointments and to complete treatments. I think we loved seeing the children as much as they loved seeing us, and much chatter and excitement would be in the air.”

“It was so important for us to build healthy relationships and break some of the stigma and fear that children often had around visits to the dentist.”

Dot still has the drawings and pictures that children have presented to her over the years and was gifted a book of drawings and colourings that her young patients have given her to thank her for their sparkling healthy smiles.

“I feel fortunate to have worked with not only a fantastic dental team but also a super supportive community health team and alongside such amazing school principals and teachers over the years,” Dot said.

“Together, they made our job so much easier.”

“It is a bittersweet moment for me, but it is time to put my feet up and enjoy other things that put a smile on my dial.”

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