Welcome to the Future!
I hope you are all off to a stellar start of the year! As 2018 was coming to an end, I spent some time reflecting on my career, and it got me thinking about how dental hygiene has evolved over the years.
In the 1990s, it seemed that dental hygienists had one of three main career path options: clinical, education, or industry. Now, the options are limitless. Dental hygienists can practice in a variety of settings and tailor their career to their interests and lifestyle. It is exciting to meet dental hygienists who have taken their career on a path that didn't seem possible when I graduated from dental hygiene school.
The dental industry has changed considerably. Organized dental hygiene associations are advocating for dental hygiene, and dental hygienists are clearly ready for the challenge to keep up with the trends. For instance, the level of care that a dental hygienist can provide is at an all-time high. Patients benefit now more than ever from not only assessment and management of oral disease, but screenings for systemic disease. The value and impact of a dental hygiene practice is significant, and it will be thrilling to see what comes next.
Inside Dental Hygieneis committed to maintaining a 360-degree view of dental hygiene and celebrating all the possibilities available to dental hygienists. We will highlight interesting career choices by real-life dental hygienists as well as the latest technology and trends in the industry. We will offer monthly continuing education articles and others to keep you informed of emerging techniques, materials, and approaches to patient care, empowering you to make the most of your career.
This month is all about modernizing and improving patient care. There's the "old way of doing things" that, in many instances, is not appropriate by today's standards. For example, bleeding on probing (BOP). We can use BOP to engage our patients to promote healthier home practices. In addition, there are tools that dental hygienists can use for an additional method for diagnosis or to implement intra-oral scanning into the practice. Recommendations for the pregnant patient and infection control have been updated and it is essential that we know how to appropriately care for our patients. From a legislative standpoint, independent practice and the utilization of dental therapists is still a topic for debate, but more and more states are empowering dental hygienists to treat underserved communities with more autonomy. Check out where your state is in this process!
I encourage you to subscribe to our e-newsletter and to stay connected via social media. I look forward to seeing you on social media and communicating with you!
Best wishes for a happy, healthy, and successful year!
Pamela Maragliano-Muniz, DMD, RDH