You Down with APP? Yeah, You Know Me!

Hygienists, you need this. You want this in your life. You will thank yourself. Your patients will thank you. I feel love and snuggles and see rainbows and unicorns when using the air powder polisher (APP). As you are well aware, our patients can literally feel bacteria because plaque is bacteria, and plaque makes our teeth feel like they are...

Bridging the Gap between Medicine and Dentistry

The question, “What does my blood pressure have to do with my teeth?” is likely one dental hygienists who take blood pressure have heard. As dental hygienists, we realize the simple answer to this question is a lot; specifically safety while under our treatment and overall health of the patient. Many clinicians have had cases of referring a patient...

Erythritol: The Other Sugar Alcohol

The sugar alcohol family, known as polyols, have become popular in chewing gums, lozenges, and dental hygiene products due to their unique ability to add sweetness and improve oral health. Introduced in 1970, xylitol has recently been at the forefront of the discussion with benefits backed by extensive research. It has been incorporated into many dental hygiene products across...

Networking: Dental Hygienists Should Make One Connection after Another

Networking can be intimidating, but it is necessary for your continued success. Networking is a form of communication in the professional world. Networking can occur inside and outside the dental profession. As with many things in life, it’s who you know. I’ll use my father as an example. He is not in the dental profession, but he is a professional...

Identifying Human Trafficking in the Dental Setting

Human trafficking is a modern form of slavery, second only to drugs as the world’s largest criminal activity. The United Nations defines trafficking in human beings as the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring, or receipt of persons by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, abduction, fraud, detection, abuse of power or position of...

Charcoal Whitening Toothpaste Trend: Should it Stay or Fade Away?

charcoal toothpaste
The first thing that comes to my mind when I hear the word "charcoal," is a great tasting chargrilled burger. What I do not think about is rubbing a charcoal powder to cleanse my face or use as a facial peel. I also don't think about plastering black clumps of charcoal all over my teeth to try to whiten...

Why One Hygienist Decided to Dust Off Her Laser for Periodontal Maintenance Care

Laser. The word sounds scary if it isn’t understood. A laser produces a narrow and intense beam of light energy which can be used to treat a wide range of dental conditions. For a hygienist, the laser is an effective and comfortable way to decontaminate periodontal pockets, help treat gingivitis, remove necrotic tissue, or treat an annoying canker sore....

The History of Dental Hygiene: Development through the Years

As I get older, I notice myself commonly making references to the past by using the phrase, “Back in the day…” Music and television award shows also pay homage to their past and the changes that have taken place over the years. Then, too, education teaches lessons on past world history as it does on current world affairs. History...

Can a Dental Hygienist’s Career Goals be Ambitious Too?

A dental hygienist could pinpoint five or six zip codes for his or her career goals. I live in the 74135 zip code. So I want all dental disease eradicated through preventive efforts in that zip code. My doctor’s office is in 74137 zip code. He has some patients living there, of course, but I want that entire zip code...

Oil Pulling: Should Dental Hygienists Recommend It?

Oil pulling, and the supposed health benefits of it, has been making the rounds for a few years now. You've probably even had a patient or two ask you about it. Spread through articles on social media and online blogs, oil pulling is touted as the latest and greatest way to improve oral health and purify your body. As a...

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