7 Ways to Turn Awkward Appointments into Amazing Ones

We all have that one patient (maybe more) that we see in our schedule and inwardly cringe. Or we have a new patient that makes our head spin with their bizarre behavior. How do you handle that? What do you say? Can we make this appointment go “normally?” Below are seven tips for making awkward appointments run smoothly thereby...

How to Build Good Rapport with Patients and Set Yourself Apart

Have you ever had a patient ask, “So, what do you think?” after the dentist walks out of the room? If so, that patient trusts you not only with his/her oral health care but also with an important financial decision. You have developed a good rapport with that patient, and maintaining it is extremely important for many reasons. We...

Radiology Update: Evolving Standards for Pregnancy, Shielding, and Frequency

The Archives of Clinical Skiagraphy was the first radiology scientific journal. First published in May 1896, just six months after the discovery of x-rays by Wilhelm Roentgen, Sydney Rowland wrote in the first editorial: “The object of this publication is to put on record in permanent form some of the most striking applications of the New Photography to the...

Communication in Dentistry: The Layman’s Way

Communication is the process by which information is exchanged between individuals through a common system of articulation. This article will focus on replacing dental terms and conditions using layman terms to ensure patient understanding and, thus, better communication. Providing a clearer picture of the diagnosis, treatment or recommendations will allow clinicians to bridge the gap between themselves and their...

Air Polishing Dangers: Case Study of an Injured Dental Patient

A friend recently reached out to me and other dental professionals on Facebook to ask for help regarding a soft tissue injury sustained while his dental hygienist was using an air polisher. We’ll just refer to this fellow as Joe to protect his privacy. Joe has seemingly suffered every complication and long-term side effect from treatment for head-and-neck cancer...

Treating Bilingual Patients in Dental and Healthcare Settings

Personally, growing up bilingual and attending school in educational spaces that emphasized English-only curriculum was challenging. Language is more than just a group of words necessary to express one’s thoughts and feelings. Language is the essence of one’s personal identity, the very fabric that makes each of us who we are. I have spent many years researching language and...

Understanding Behavioral Theories Leads to Better Oral Health Education

Learning the theoretical frameworks of health promotion and disease prevention is an extremely important and useful tool for dental hygienists providing patient education. For health educators to deliver useful interventions to the public, we first need to be aware of the theories involved to understand how our population relates to behavior changes. According to an article by the National Institutes...

Preeclampsia and Periodontal Disease: What Hygienists Need to Know

“Preeclampsia is a disorder that occurs only during pregnancy and the postpartum period and affects both the mother and the unborn baby,” the Preeclampsia Foundation states, “Preeclampsia affects at least 5-8% of all pregnancies and is a rapidly progressive condition characterized by high blood pressure and usually the presence of protein in the urine.” The condition usually occurs after 20...

Difficult Patients: Not an Endangered Species

You see them all the time, difficult patients. They are definitely not an endangered species. We all have those war stories. Throughout the hygiene program, and the few months I’ve been in practice, I’ve already had my fair share of difficult patients. Even though they can sometimes bring a negative atmosphere to the appointment, we still have time to...

Active Reflective Listening: Improving Communication Between Dental Patients and Staff

Have you ever wondered if anyone is actually listening? Do you feel like there is a breakdown of communication somewhere, and this is inhibiting your ability to get your message across to patients, staff members, and maybe even friends and family? I have been there, both as a clinician and a patient, as well as a family member and friend....

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