A Profession We Take Personally
I love September-there's no better time of the year in New England, and it always feels like a fresh start to a new year. It's also the best time to reflect on the year and make changes before the close of 2019, from both a personal and professional standpoint.
As dental hygienists, we have a tremendous opportunity to impact many lives within our community. More and more research has emerged that links oral and general health, and we are at the forefront of keeping people healthy. Dental hygienists are often the people who identify abnormalities within the oral cavity and encourage patients to get a systemic diagnosis. We also have access to modern tools and the expertise to reduce inflammation on not only natural teeth, but also around implants.
We also impact the practices where we work. Dental hygienists are often the first to learn about new legislation and policies and to facilitate compliance within the practice. In addition, within many practice settings, the role of dental hygiene has evolved into a business within the overall business model. Dental hygienists have to be prepared for what this means for their individual practice so they can thrive in this challenging, competitive market.
Because our career is so challenging, we also have to look out for our personal wellbeing. We have patients to care for, and in doing so, we tax our minds and bodies every day. As a result, many dental hygienists have to reduce the amount of hours they practice or stop practicing clinically due to work-related injuries. It is vital to know that there are terrific options available to protect our livelihood, should an injury take place.
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I hope you have a beautiful, empowered, and productive September.
Pamela Maragliano-Muniz, DMD, RDH