Salivary Diagnostics Can Help Bridge Systemic Health for Dental Hygienists

In dentistry, saliva has traditionally been more of a nuisance than anything else. Dental hygienists know the constant struggle of trying to keep patients from choking during a prophy or attempting to keep a tooth dry when placing a sealant. Yet, what if saliva holds the key to integrating medicine and dentistry? Salivary diagnostics is an insightful tool that dental...

How the Pandemic Strengthens the Case for Teledentistry and Dental Hygienists

Since the shut down over COVID-19, the dental world as we know it has changed, and teledentistry has become an industry buzz word. Although offices were closed, the need for emergency treatment did not stop. The time to already have a teledentistry platform in place had passed. Unfortunately, many offices fell short of this much-needed tool when they didn’t have...

Mask Selection: What the Dental Professional Should Know Post-COVID-19

Editor's Note: Information about COVID-19 is changing on a daily, sometimes hourly, basis. We have made every attempt to ensure this article is up-to-date at the time of original article publication (June 20, 2020), but with the rapid changes occurring, some information may have changed since publication. Please visit coronavirus.gov for the latest news and information on COVID-19. Masks have long...

Stressful Times: The Role of Dental Hygienists in Suicide Awareness

Recent world events have created an extremely stressful situation for dental professionals. The cumulative tension of income loss, homeschooling, isolation, lack of essential items, partner power struggles, being inundated with new safety information, and returning to work with stringent infection control mandates may become unendurable for many. Some of us are returning to work and adjusting to the “new normal.”...

Dental Practitioners Address Serious COVID-19 Issues in Northern Italy

Has anyone asked you how the COVID-19 epidemic has affected you, our dental professionals? We hear about the effects that the disease has on doctors and emergency personnel, who are no doubt heroes, but those of us who spend our days literally in the mouth of danger are tremendously affected as well. Italy has an excruciating number of infected...

CDC Releases New Guidance for Dental Care During COVID-19

Editor's Note: Information about COVID-19 is changing on a daily, sometimes hourly, basis. We have made every attempt to ensure this article is up-to-date at the time of publication (May 26, 2020), but with the rapid changes occurring, some information may have changed since publication. Please visit https://www.coronavirus.gov/ for the latest news and information on COVID-19. Article updated August 4, 2020...

Dental Hygiene’s Professional Reflection during Pandemic: Making Lemonade out of Lemons

To many of us, it feels like just yesterday dental hygiene schools were returning from Christmas break and focusing on upcoming board exams and the start of freshman clinic. Barely two weeks into March, the buzz of the COVID-19 virus swept across campus, and, by March 13, we saw the halt of classes on campus. The weeks that followed brought...

The Science Behind Stress and How Dental Professionals Can Cope

Among Americans who were surveyed by the American Institute of Stress, 77% reported physical symptoms as a result of stress.1 It may surprise you to learn that this 2017 survey occurred prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. The stress load today, specifically for dental practice owners and employees, maybe much higher. Temporary practice closures are contributing to the stress load. According...

Emergency Dental Treatment During Pandemic Should Lead to More Patient Education

So many things will be changing before we are able to go back to traditional patient care. Personal protective equipment, sanitizing wipes, aerosol control, and barriers will, of course, be the main priority. Secondly, we also need to define infection control standards for the common areas such as will coffee service be permitted, proximity of reception area seating, and...

Ask Kara RDH: Why Isn’t Today’s RDH Addressing New Infection Control Guidelines?

Why aren’t there any articles on Today’s RDH addressing new infection control guidelines for when hygienists return to work? The short answer is because new infection control guidelines for post-pandemic hygiene don’t exist. (Please take note of the date this was published/posted) Long answer: Right now, the CDC only has interim guidelines for infection control practices for seeing emergency patients. They...

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