Dr McGlennen: Let’s talk about how you use OralDNA® salivary diagnostics in your practice.
Jessica Clarke RDH: We are currently using the OralDNA® MyPerioPath® test as standard protocol for all active non-surgical periodontal treatment in our office.
Dr McGlennen: What are the top two things you consider when selecting a patient for testing?
Jessica Clarke RDH: We stick with the traditional signs of periodontal disease (PD) such as bleeding gums, and when we review the patient’s medical history, we are looking for systemic conditions associated with PD.
Dr McGlennen: What do you believe are the biggest benefits to using salivary diagnostics?
Jessica Clarke RDH: One of the biggest benefits to salivary testing is the confirmation that periodontal disease is bacterial in nature. If we can control the bacteria, we can arrest the infection. Another benefit is that we now know, from the lab report, if the patient has any oral pathogens that are resistant to traditional non-surgical therapy. With this information, we can customize our therapy choices and produce a more predictable outcome to treatment.
Dr McGlennen: What is your favorite part of the MyPerioPath® lab report results?
Jessica Clarke RDH: My favorite part of the MyPerioPath® lab report is the knowledge of what’s causing the infection for each specific patient. It tells me how worried to be for this patient and how aggressively to treat signs and symptoms of reoccurrence per individual.
Dr McGlennen: How do your patients respond to this technology? What is their #1 question?
Jessica Clarke RDH: We are lucky being in the shadows of Proctor & Gamble’s headquarters (here in Cincinnati). Many of our patients understand science and the way medicine treats infections. It makes sense to them. When the test is bundled with treatment, there is rarely a refusal.
Dr McGlennen: What is your biggest challenge?
Jessica Clarke RDH: While the MyPerioPath® report has a great section about systemic effects of oral pathogens, our office is primarily a cosmetically driven practice. Sometimes it is difficult to impart to our patients that all aspects of health are important, especially within a 1-hour appointment and all while addressing their dental wants. The challenge is finding out what each person wants and relating that to what they “need.”
Dr McGlennen: If a new OralDNA® provider were to ask you for advice, what would be your best tip?
Jessica Clarke RDH: Begin testing some of your active periodontal patients. Presenting this higher quality of care as a package and not an optional adjunct is extremely helpful, too.
Dr McGlennen: Where do you see salivary diagnostics in 3-5 years? 10 years? What would be the impact on your practice/patients?
Jessica Clarke RDH: I can’t guess but I am excited to see where it does go! I have seen it become more “mainstream” with the other testing such as ancestry/genetic tests…I would like to see even more evidence-based specific treatments for specific bacteria. The case studies on the OralDNA® website provide great insight for what has worked for some clinicians, but I can’t wait until this is an even more widely accepted, evidence-based method to provide the correct therapy.
**To learn more about becoming an OralDNA Provider: Text “OralDNA” to 31996**
Jessica truly believes a person’s health radiates from their smile. To her, a healthy smile not only means free from disease, but also the ability to feel proud and confident when smiling. That's health. Being part of the transformation, a person goes through when their smile becomes their best accessory is heartwarming.
Her favorite patients are the fearful ones. It's her top priority to ensure your experience is a positive one.
In her spare time, Jessica enjoys escaping to family life with her husband Adam, and their children: Rowan, Finley, London and Warren “Ren”. She also enjoys reading, sewing, and gardening.