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Spring Hatfield, RDH, BSPH

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Spring Hayes Hatfield, RDH, BSPH, is a graduate of Florida State College at Jacksonville and practices clinically in Vestavia Hills, Alabama. She is Dental Hygiene Board Certified in Florida, Louisiana, and Alabama. She is a member of the American Dental Hygiene Association. Spring is on the Advisory Board at Today’s RDH and holds the position of Associate Editor. Her passion is elevating the dental hygiene profession through science and education as well as clinical excellence. In her free time, she loves traveling, reading, and spending time with her husband, children and the animals at her useless animal farm. She can be reached via email at Spring@todaysrdh.com.

QUIZ: Test Your Anxiety and Pain Control Knowledge to Help Patients

Are you in need of CE credits? If so, check out our peer-reviewed, self-study CE courses here. Now Check Out the Self-Study, Peer-Reviewed CE Courses from Today's RDH! Listen to the Today's RDH Dental Hygiene Podcast Below:

Dental Board Exams: The Ethical Conflicts of Using Live Dental Patients

Are you aware that dentistry is the only area of health care that requires a live board patent exam for licensure? In no other area of health care is this an acceptable practice.1 Historically, we have been using live patients since the early 1900s.2 The consistent use of live patients for so many years has made shifting away from...

Curiosity Killed the Plaque Ep. 5: Current Protocols in Root Planing, Subgingival Irrigation, and FMD

In this episode of Curiosity Killed the Plaque, Spring Hatfield, RDH, BSPH, discusses current protocols in root planing, subgingival irrigation, and full mouth debridement. Give it a watch, and make sure to subscribe to the Today’s RDH Dental Hygiene podcast on your favorite podcasting app or by going to https://anchor.fm/todaysrdh.

QUIZ: Test Your Dental Hygiene Profession Knowledge

Are you in need of CE credits? If so, check out our peer-reviewed, self-study CE courses here. Now Check Out the Self-Study, Peer-Reviewed CE Courses from Today's RDH! Listen to the Today's RDH Dental Hygiene Podcast Below:

Dental Practice Acts: How Often Should Dental Hygienists Review Them?

Questions abound on social media regarding what is allowed to occur in the dental office, ranging from "Can assistants polish?" to "When the dentist is out of the office, can hygienists see patients who have not had an exam in 12 months? "Unfortunately, there is not one right answer. The answer depends on the state in which the situation...

Critical Thinking: How Dental Professionals Can Reboot Thought Patterns

Carl Sagan once said, "The truth may be puzzling. It may take some work to grapple with. It may be counterintuitive. It may contradict deeply held prejudices. It may not be consonant with what we desperately want to be true. But our preferences do not determine what is true." Critical thinking does not come naturally; it takes some level of...

Oral Cancer: HPV-related Small Cell Carcinoma of the Oropharynx

HPV-related oropharyngeal cancer is becoming more widely discussed in literature and dental offices. Over the past 30 years, we have learned more about HPV’s role in oropharyngeal cancer. Currently, oropharyngeal cancer is the most common HPV-related cancer in the United States.1 Most of the oropharyngeal cancer caused by HPV are squamous cell carcinomas. However, there are multiple phenotypes that are...

Refresher on Different Types of Scientific Studies and Their Clinical Relevance

Practicing clinicians must understand the differences in the types of dental research and clinical relevance when reading and reviewing scientific literature. This awareness helps ensure dental professionals are providing the best possible care to patients and can assist in helping determine the best recommendations or tools to improve patients' oral health. Placing too much weight on a study that may...

6 Underutilized CDT Codes for Dental Hygiene Treatment

The one thing I wished I had learned in hygiene school was how to understand current dental terminology (CDT) codes better. However, this wasn't even mentioned in passing in my program. I understand these codes and insurance should not in any way dictate treatment recommendations; however, understanding these codes and their limitations helps to have conversations with patients regarding the...

Chiari Malformation: Identifying Potential Oral Health Symptoms in Dental Patients

Chiari malformation is a condition in which the brain tissue extends into the spinal canal. Many cases are asymptomatic and only discovered due to imaging for other conditions. However, when it is symptomatic, it can be quite painful. It is estimated that the prevalence of Chiari malformation is around one in 1,000 people. The four types of Chiari malformation are: ...

QUIZ: Test Your Prophylactic Antibiotics Knowledge

Are you in need of CE credits? If so, check out our peer-reviewed, self-study CE courses here. Now Check Out the Self-Study, Peer-Reviewed CE Courses from Today's RDH! Listen to the Today's RDH Dental Hygiene Podcast Below:

Evidence-Based Dental Care: Evolution of SRP, FMD, and Subgingival Irrigation

As a hobby, I enjoy reading scientific literature published in the 1800s and a few from the early 1900s. What fascinates me is just how far we have come in medicine and dentistry. The progress we have made ‒ not only making treatment more comfortable for patients but also the updated evidence-based protocols for clinicians that provide the guidance...

Curiosity Killed the Plaque Ep. 4: Monkeypox & Dentistry

In this episode of Curiosity Killed the Plaque, Spring Hatfield, RDH, BSPH, discusses monkeypox, including the history, virology, and pathophysiology, as well as the impact is has on dental professionals and dental offices. Give it a watch, and make sure to subscribe to the Today’s RDH Dental Hygiene podcast on your favorite podcasting app or by going to https://anchor.fm/todaysrdh. Please note:...

Researchers Use Teeth to Discover the Origin of Herpes Simplex Virus

According to the World Health Organization, several billion people globally are infected with the herpes simplex virus (HSV-1).1 Determining the origin and changes that occur in viruses can help scientists better understand the virus as well as therapeutic and preventive measures. However, tracing the origin and genomic changes can be challenging for viruses that have infected humans for hundreds...

QUIZ: Oral Manifestations of Infectious Diseases

Are you in need of CE credits? If so, check out our peer-reviewed, self-study CE courses here. Now Check Out the Self-Study, Peer-Reviewed CE Courses from Today's RDH! Listen to the Today's RDH Dental Hygiene Podcast Below:

Quorum Sensing Research Hopes to Reduce Antibiotic Use and Oral Biofilm

Bacteria. Can't live with them. Can't live without them. Commensal bacteria keep us healthy; they provide essential nutrients, defend against colonization of pathogens, are the building blocks of the gastrointestinal tract, and stimulate the immune system when needed. However, pathogenic bacteria can cause a plethora of issues and diseases that can wreak havoc on our bodies and, in some...

Curiosity Killed the Plaque Ep. 3: New Discoveries of Head & Neck Physiology

In this episode of Curiosity Killed the Plaque, Spring Hatfield, RDH, BSPH, discusses new discoveries of head and neck physiology. Give it a watch, and make sure to subscribe to the Today’s RDH Dental Hygiene podcast on your favorite podcasting app or by going to https://anchor.fm/todaysrdh.

Dental Hygienists at Risk for Developing Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome

Dental professionals frequently report musculoskeletal pain, especially in the upper extremities. A study published in 2021 showed that 92.6% of participants (n=229 dentists) suffered from musculoskeletal disorders in at least one body region.1 In contrast, a study focusing on hygienists (n=647 dental hygienists) found that 83% reported work-related musculoskeletal pain, primarily in the hands and arms (carpal tunnel and...

An Overview of Monkeypox for Dental Hygienists & Other Dental Professionals

Editor’s Note: The current monkeypox outbreak is an on-going situation. We have made every attempt to ensure this article is up-to-date at the time of publication (July 3, 2022), but some information may have changed since publication. Please visit https://www.cdc.gov/poxvirus/monkeypox/response/2022/index.html for the latest news and information on monkeypox. Monkeypox is a member of the Poxviridae family of viruses ‒ an...

Curiosity Killed the Plaque Ep. 2: Fair Wages for Dental Hygienists

In this episode of Curiosity Killed the Plaque, Spring Hatfield, RDH, BSPH, discusses fair wages for dental hygienists. Give it a watch, and make sure to subscribe to the Today’s RDH Dental Hygiene podcast on your favorite podcasting app or by going to https://anchor.fm/todaysrdh.