Use Your Voice, Dental Hygienists!

Let me ask you something: how many of you have ever felt like you do not have a voice in the workplace? We hygienists often have a negative reputation as the “divas” of the dental office. This reputation is not always undeserved. I know for certain I am guilty of just being a straight-up brat once in a while, and...

Dental Patients Say the Craziest Things

As hygienists, we see all kinds of patients and hear many stories from them. We know their life stories and their families. We are people-oriented which is the thing I love the most about dental hygiene.  However, sometimes our patients say or do things that we aren’t expecting, and we have to come up with a quick, yet professional,...

12 Ways to Improve the Professionalism of Your Dental Office

I feel I need to begin this article with a vent. Allow me to share a recent experience to demonstrate how office behavior can be perceived from a patient’s point of view. I recently went to a doctor’s office for a yearly checkup. When I approached the desk to sign in, there was no one there to greet me....

6 Things Hygienists Wished Their Doctor/Boss Knew

As dental hygienists, we respect the doctor we work for. After all, it is their practice, their business, and we work either under direct or indirect supervision of them. They are the boss. Because of this respect, some topics that are hard or just plain uncomfortable to bring up with them. We might also hold back because we don’t...

Corporate vs. Private Practice Dentistry: The Pros and Cons

General trends in the dental field are leaning towards the increased presence of DSO organizations. A DSO organization is a Dental Support Organization or the corporation of dental offices. Some of the most established DSOs are Heartland Dental, Aspen Dental, and Dental Works. Although the presence of corporate dental offices has increased, private practice offices are still alive and...

How Do I Do All This in 60 Minutes?

The race of the clock, the fifth glare you've given your doctor in the last 10 minutes, the sweat dripping down your back, the panic rising, the need to strip off your lab coat and turn on your fan immediately, the pacing, the frantically trying to find and set up another op for your next patient. TIME MANAGEMENT -...

Increasing Productivity by Anesthetizing for Your Doctor Should Increase Your Paycheck

Anesthesia is the most feared part of a dental visit. Patients express their fear of the needle the instant they walk in the dental office, even if they are only there for routine prophylaxis. Daily, in private practice, I am asked if the patient “will be getting a shot today?” Sure we have been taught decreased fear strategies while...

Dental Burnout: You Don’t Have to Work Full Time to Work Full Time

Dental hygiene has been known as a “mommy job” in my community. We don’t have to take call, we don’t have to work weekends, and most of us work part-time. I have known few hygienists who do work “full-time,” and most of them have expressed feeling what we like to call clinical “burnout.” They end up feeling the need...

How to Stay Positive with Patients & Coworkers

Being a dental hygienist can obviously be tiring. Seeing patient after patient can slowly chip away at your positivity. Having to work with negative co-workers, or people you don’t get along with makes everything that much more difficult. Dealing with problem patients, staying on schedule, and having to put up with not-so-kind coworkers in the office can make work an...

Keeping the Schedule Filled: Battling the Saga of Appointment No Shows

I think since the dawn of civilization, there has been a problem in dental offices that has yet to be solved. Come on! You know what I’m talking about! Keeping the dental hygiene schedules full and productive! You can seemingly have the perfect day scheduled when you begin the day fresh-faced at 8 a.m. But, by 9 o’clock, you have...

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