Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Committee Member

John Swetnam

Number of Pages



This thesis presents an ethnographic description of women living in Safe Nest, a shelter for victims of domestic violence in Las Vegas, Nevada. The purpose of this research is to investigate why dental care is rarely utilized by women residing in the Las Vegas shelters, even when dental conditions may be impeding an individual's level of self-confidence and opportunities for employment. This study presents evidence that access to dental care is hindered by social and economic factors and a lack of communication between residents in the shelter and the service providers in the community; Since utilization of health care services is dependent on cultural and contextual factors, this study provides insight into the victims' knowledge and need of dental care. The goal of this research is to increase information of available resources and expand perspectives about the complex issues surrounding the acquisition of dental care by victims of domestic violence.


Access; Care; Dental; Domestic violence; Nevada; Victims; Violence; Las Vegas; Shelters; Abuse

Controlled Subject

Ethnology; Public policy; Dentistry

File Format


File Size

3358.72 KB

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




If you are the rightful copyright holder of this dissertation or thesis and wish to have the full text removed from Digital Scholarship@UNLV, please submit a request to and include clear identification of the work, preferably with URL.


IN COPYRIGHT. For more information about this rights statement, please visit