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Rebecca Marie Friend, BS, RDH

Rebecca Marie Friend, BS, RDH
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Rebecca Marie Friend, RDH, BS, attained her Associate of Applied Science degree in Dental Hygiene from Ferris State University, Big Rapids, Michigan in 1987, where she also met and married her husband. She has been a practicing dental hygienist for over 30 years and has raised three sons while working as a full-time clinical dental hygienist. Rebecca currently practices in Battle Creek, Michigan, for Dr. Earl E. Gaball, DDS, a general and sedation dentist. She resides in neighboring historic Marshall, Michigan. Rebecca is board certified in Nitrous Oxide and Local Anesthesia Administration and is certified in low-level laser therapy. Continuously striving to improve upon her skills and methods of forward-thinking in the dental world, she recently attained her Bachelor of Science degree in Oral Health Promotion through Action Research at O’Hehir University. She is actively involved in a mentorship with students at O’Hehir University. “I take pride in my abilities as a skilled periodontal therapist. I enjoy the patient-practitioner relationship that develops when trust and health are gained, taking mindful care of every individual that I connect with. The benefits of helping others achieve a healthy mouth and regain their confidence with a great smile and healthier self are very rewarding. Whole body health begins with the mouth.” In her free time, Rebecca enjoys visiting the beautiful shores of Lake Michigan where the sunsets are magical, the dunes are stunning, and the rocks are a collector’s delight. She loves to immerse herself in nature whenever she gets a chance and enjoys canoeing, kayaking, nature-walks, flexibility training, yoga, and little “get-a-ways” with her husband. Family life has always been important to her, and now that her three grown sons have spread their wings, she has a little more time to spread hers.

Online Dental Reviews: How to Turn a Negative into a Positive

In today’s online society, digital media has repeatedly demonstrated its power to influence, and dental professionals have been the recipients of the dreaded and unexpected negative review. Hopefully, your dental practice screens and monitors their online reviews on a daily basis. How you react to a negative review reflects the character and integrity of the office as a whole. Take...

Mental Nerve Block: A Welcomed Alternative in Mandibular Anesthesia

Effective anesthesia does not have to be a source of anxiety for patients or practitioners. Most of us dread the mandibular inferior alveolar nerve block (MIANB) and will try anything to avoid giving this injection. I am one of those practitioners who have explored other options to achieve pain-free anesthesia and pain-free periodontal treatment. When I was learning to give...

Case Study: Patient Finally Heeds RDH’s Alert Over Lesion

Last spring, I treated a patient who I have seen routinely every six months for the past 11 years. Rob is a 75-year-old Caucasian male, heavy smoker, an upper denture wearer, has a history of skin cancer, very stubborn, and insurance-driven. Yet, we enjoy each other’s visits. We have been discussing tobacco cessation for 11 years now; I must confess that...

Why Home Care Should Be Flexible about Recommended Oral Hygiene Regimens

How many times have your impeccable scaling skills and topnotch, by-the-book oral hygiene recommendations and demonstrations resulted in an exhausting six-month recare appointment? The fact that plaque and calculus reinfest some mouths in six to eleven weeks (and sometimes less) sets us up for failure if we over-focus on scaling and under-focus on the cause of the biofilm reinfestation. Scaling...

Situational Awareness: Keeping the Operatories Busy and Everyone Happy

Most dental professionals, whether they are at the front desk, assistants, or dental hygienists, are intuitively aware that: “When the doctor is happy, everybody is happy.” What makes the doctor the happiest? When his/her (and the hygienists’) chairs are not sitting idle. Do you have a plan of action to help keep those chairs filled? Situational awareness helps. Situational Awareness Situational awareness...

Spondylolisthesis and Spondylosis: A Warning for Hygienists with Back Pain

Managing chronic pain can be a lifetime task. Unfortunately, how we manage the pain may have dire consequences. Regular exercise, walking, yoga, massage, and chiropractic care of some methods of pain control and prevention. All of these methods may help prevent and control pain symptoms, but what if we forget to ascertain the cause? Radiography is the Gold Standard...

Be an “Eagle-Eye” – The Importance of Hygienist, Doctor, and Patient Co-diagnosing

My employer often calls me “Eagle Eye” because he knows and appreciates my skills as a hygienist. Having a heightened sense of the oral condition of each patient sets up for a great handoff during the doctor’s examination. It is essential to go above and beyond routine care to assist in co-diagnosing with the doctor and patient for a...

Type 3c Diabetes: Newly Discovered, Misunderstood, and Misdiagnosed

I am always surprised and intrigued to discover new information through my patients. Recently, a patient (male, late 40s) proudly showed me his smartphone app and explained how it tracked his blood sugar, insulin, carbs, weight, and blood glucose levels. He wears a patch on his arm, which he changes every two weeks. Blood sugar levels and other information...

Case Study: Dental Hygiene Patient’s “Extra” Thyroid Medication Raises Flag

An elderly female patient recently presented with hypothyroidism. Her health history documented that she was taking Synthroid. While verbally reviewing and updating her health history, she stated that she also took an OTC thyroid vitamin but did not know its name. She also disclosed that she is seeing an herbalist who is having her rub two essential oils (lemongrass...

Code Red: What Dental Codes to Use in Different Situations

Sometimes it feels like we need a code red to determine which code best suits our patient’s particular dental condition. I am sure we have all been there. Do we use D4355 for Debridement or just start with D4341 or D4342? Do I use the Gingivitis code D4366 or just fight through a Prophylaxis with the D1110 code and...