3 Simple Steps for Revitalizing a Dental Hygiene Career

Are you starting to doubt your dental hygiene career? How many times have you found yourself going back and forth asking, "Is this the right career for me?" Do you struggle with finding fulfillment from your job because you're so exhausted? We commit to the dental hygiene profession because we love what we do. We love being educators. We love...

What It’s Like to be a Hygienist at a Periodontal Office

My career in dental hygiene has spanned over three decades ‒ something I find hard to believe. I have worked as a dental hygienist in various settings, including general dentistry, sedation dentistry, and prosthodontics. While I look back fondly on my time spent learning the different skills needed for each of these dental specialties, my dental hygienist heart belongs in...

The Authentic RDH: With New Challenges, Hygienists Should Stay True to Themselves

Ah, January ‒ the beginning of a brand-new year. The new year brings a sense of hope, purpose, and possibilities for people, a fresh start. The previous year is behind us, and whatever mistakes dental hygienists have made or tasks they didn't accomplish or even attempt is history now. In January, resolutions have been made, new diets and workout...

Incorporating the Five Love Languages into Dentistry

The Five Love Languages series by Gary Chapman offers insight into how our society expresses and receives love. This concept focuses on filling a “love tank” with acts of service, words of affirmation, giving/receiving of gifts, quality time, and physical touch. The actions could appear, for example, in our relationships with family, friends, and co-workers. How can the “Five...

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...

The Pregnant Dental Hygienist

Dental hygiene is dominated by women, and because of this, you are more than likely going to encounter an office pregnancy. This exciting time in your life may prompt a few questions such as, how can you stay comfortable before and after delivering a healthy baby? You may wonder if you will be able to keep up with the...

Roadblocks or Freedom? Using Boundaries in the Dental Office and Life

The word boundary is often misused or misunderstood. Many of my counseling clients believe that a boundary means being harsh, aggressive, or saying “no” at every turn. Often, they think that they will ruin or lose relationships if they suddenly request a different behavior or way of being from a person. Dental hygienists, for example, struggle with a boundary governing...

Dental Staff Bonus Programs: Review of 4 Incentive Plan Models

Has anyone ever participated in a bonus system in a dental office that did the exact opposite of motivating you? A bonus is extra income ‒ perhaps even unexpected ‒ you don't count on for your monthly personal budgeting. A bonus is typically designed to complement your base pay, reward you for reaching certain milestones or achievements, or as a...

Do Your Best: How Dental Hygienists Can Reclaim Their Purpose

The average dental hygienist has an allotted one-hour time slot for her or his patients. This time allotment often does not change whether the patient is in the operatory chair for a six-month prophy, periodontal maintenance, or periodontal therapy. Some dental hygienists actually have 40 to 45 minutes of allotted time per patient, making their workday impractical, inconvenient, and...

Wanted: Unicorn Dental Office. Dental Hygienists’ Dream or Reality?

Tingles race up and down my spine as my feather-light body levitates seemingly by its own volition, high into the cottony clouds. I feel so free, so giddy with joy, and I giggle into the sky as I ride the azure expanse. The heavens above me breathe a gentle breeze as they invite me higher to the majestic space...

Healthy Smiles, Healthy Practices

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