Due Diligence Hygienists Should Take for Dry Mouth Patients

Each time a patient sits down in my chair, I ask them a series of questions before I do anything else: Are there any changes in your health since we last saw you in the office? Are you currently taking any medications, either prescribed or over-the-counter? Is there anything giving you any trouble in your mouth? Any pain, sensitivity,...

The Education Process of Prophylaxis vs. Scaling and Root Planing

Note: This is Part 3 of Debbi Viger’s series, Special Needs: Everyone Has Special Needs. Read Part 1 here and Part 2 here. Why do some patients have such a difficult time wrapping their head around the difference between a traditional, preventive “cleaning” and treatment for disease? Every hygienist goes through this at some point, trying desperately to explain prophylaxis vs....

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...

5 Things to Consider Before Recommending a Toothbrush to Patients

How much thought do you put into your patients’ home care products? I think most hygienists do put effort into recommending products. Maybe it is because they have seen those products work for patients in the past. However, some are very limited in their recommendations because the practice will only purchase certain products; usually, less expensive products that are...

Dedication to Patient Education

In the world of dentistry, being a hygienist requires you to be the best dental professional you can possibly be to care for your patients to the highest standards. Throughout my career, the things that have encompassed serving my patients to the highest standards have been educating my patients at EVERY appointment, thoroughly reviewing medical history in order to...

Can You Identify the Signs of Diabetes, Hormone Disturbances, or Cancer?

As dental hygienists, we have the opportunity to spend an estimated 45 to 60 minutes with our patients at each appointment. Performing intraoral and extraoral examinations offers us the ability to be dental healthcare detectives; we can sometimes identify patient’s potential health issues before the patients recognize them themselves. I can remember an occasion when a patient asked me about...

The First Line of Defense Against Oral Cancer

Truth be told, cancer in its many forms has touched the lives of almost every single person I know. No one is safe from a cancer diagnosis. Countless children have been left without their parents, and countless parents have been left without answers. So many of us that have lost someone to cancer walk the desolate halls of grief;...

Considerations for the Management of Geriatric Patients

The United States has a growing demographic of older adults, those 65 years of age and older, who are increasingly becoming a large part of dental practices. Dental professionals can play an integral part in helping this population to overcome physical, cognitive, and environmental changes; including challenges in relation to their oral health that they may face with aging....

Alleviating Dentinal Hypersensitivity with Shield Force Plus

Shield Force Plus
Disclosure: We value transparency at Today’s RDH. This article is sponsored content from Tokuyama Dental America as part of our sponsored partner program. A familiar problem Dentinal hypersensitivity is a common pain that is estimated to occur in approximately 15% to 20% of all dental patients. It is widely accepted that in almost all cases, this sensitivity is caused by rapid fluid movement...

Getting Down to It: Gingival Recession and Sensitivity

As a practicing hygienist, how many patients could you say are victims of gingival recession? I can honestly say that at least half of the patients I treat have some degree of recession. Many of them do not even know what recession is. They only understand the sensitivity that they feel as they drink or eat anything cold. Are...

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