Seizing an Opportunity
Opportunities may not come along often, but when they do we should take full advantage of them. As the saying goes, "If a window of opportunity appears, don't pull down the shade." In certain circumstances dental practitioners may find themselves with the chance to help educate patients in times of need.
One such opportunity is when a patient presents either pregnant or planning to become pregnant. In this issue of Compendium, Dr. David Alexander and colleagues author their fourth and final article in a series on dental care as it relates to healthy pregnancy. As they point out, pregnancy offers a unique chance for dentists to influence maternal behaviors and dental care. With a new baby entering the mother's life, the pregnancy, postpartum, and infancy period can be a time when the patient is particularly keen on learning all she can about oral healthcare for both herself and her child. The article underscores the dental team's role during and after this life-changing occasion.
Our other continuing education article this month also discusses a possible "opportunity" for clinicians to educate patients on improving their oral health and overall well-being. Dental erosion, a destructive process that can lead to significant consequences in the oral cavity, is greatly influenced by lifestyle and eating habits. In this review, Dr. Howard Strassler and co-authors emphasize that dentists should not only be proficient at detecting early signs of erosion but also be able to educate patients in dietary changes that may help reduce tooth destruction.
This month we also feature the use of digital technology in restorative dentistry. A case report describes digital scanning's utilization in the fabrication of an anterior fixed restoration supported by a dental implant and natural teeth. Additionally, our Kois Center Case highlights an esthetic smile makeover achieved with minimal tooth reduction.
Once again, we are honoring the life and passing of Compendium's Founding Editor, Dr. D. Walter Cohen. In this month's tribute, we read about Dr. Cohen's influence on the Dr. Edward B. Shils Entrepreneurial Fund, a philanthropic group that strives to ever improve the public oral health arena.
As you engage in dental practice day to day, look for opportunities to educate and inform your patients. Let Compendium be a learning tool to help you seize those opportunities.
Louis F. Rose, DDS, MD