Soft Tissue Program with a Microscope & MyPerioPath®

As with most dental practices we have a soft tissue program in place to help treat periodontal disease as well as gingivitis. We use the traditional x-rays and periodontal probing exams that allow us to assess periodontal damage that has already occurred within the soft tissues and bone. We have also implemented a new type of exam that can show us bacteria that is present in the gum tissues. Our team recently received training on the use of a microscope and Dr. Hawkins decided to purchase...
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American Academy of Oral Medicine: The Past, The Present, and The Future

On April 29-May 2, 2020, the American Academy of Oral Medicine (AAOM) celebrates its 75th annual meeting in Orlando, Florida. The theme of our meeting is “Oral Medicine: The Past, The Present, and The Future.” In 1945, “The Past,” Dr. Samuel Charles Miller founded the academy with a keen intent to integrate dental and medical issues. This inspiration has formed a strong foundation, “The Present,” that over the years, through education, collaboration, and research, has set standards for mana...
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AADP: Sharing a Better Way in Dentistry #Launch2020

It’s a new decade and 2020 has a great energy boosting ring to it! Launch your new dental decade and year of 2020 with an inspirational space themed meeting in Orlando with the American Academy of Dental Practice (AADP) March 4-7. I went to my first AADP meeting because I heard it was one of the best kept secrets in dentistry. Intrigued, I had to check it out and AADP did not disappoint. Whatever it is that I need at that point in my life, I find it at AADP either through the wonderful...
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Identify & Destroy! Synergistic Pathogenic Biofilm Management

Synergy is the combined effect of two things being greater than either one independently. As a veteran of managing periodontal diseases, that is how I view salivary diagnostics and Guided Biofilm Therapy (GBT).   With salivary diagnostics I can identify specific pathogens thriving in my patient’s biofilm, and through the process of GBT I am able to dismantle and destroy those pathogens.  This is synergy at its best. Quick review of pathogenic biofilm, then we can focus on GBT and salivary...
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Why I Teach Salivary Testing as a Dental Hygiene Instructor

  I am a dental hygienist and have spent most of my career in a periodontal practice. Most recently I split my time at Dr. Steven Peiser’s office and serve as a faculty member at Goodwin College in Connecticut teaching Oral Pathology to dental hygiene students. It has been so exciting to teach this course and share my knowledge and experience.  Specifically, I most enjoy teaching about the relationship of pathogenic bacteria to the oral-systemic link which is crucial to understand wh...
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Where to Start

A common dilemma among many dental practices is how to transition the hygiene department from prophylaxis to comprehensive periodontal diagnosis and treatment. Among the concerns is the perception that if we are starting something new, does that imply that up until now patient needs have been inadequately addressed? The simple solution to this dilemma is referring to the constantly evolving knowledge in healthcare. Using phrases such as “Research has shown” or “We now know” can help with the...
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Do You Speak HPV? Part 3

In my previous blog, I explored three common positive responses I’ve encountered from patients when offering a test for oral HPV and how I would respond to them.  In this blog, I will address some of the objections from patients and how I would further educate the patient about oral HPV and testing options. Patient 1: I don’t think I need that test.  I’ve never been exposed. Response 1: I understand but in case you’re ever curious, remember we have this potentially life-saving service ...
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Do You Speak HPV? Part 2

Dental clinicians have been on the front lines of oral cancer prevention and early detection for many years. We have been trained to do very thorough oral cancer exams and to use various light systems to visualize tissue changes; however, according to the Oral Cancer Foundation, the death rate for oral cancers has remained higher than that of many other types of cancers which we hear about routinely.1 Many studies support that the human papilloma virus (HPV) is responsible for a large number...
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Salivary Diagnostics: Your Molecular X-Ray

According to Merriam-Webster, one of the definitions of technology is a manner of accomplishing a task especially using technical processes, methods, or knowledge. This definition rings true for the introduction of clinical laboratory testing for the health care professions. It was noted in research by the NIH, “…it was not until 1896 that the first clinical laboratory was opened, a twelve-foot-by-twelve-foot room equipped at a cost of $50 at Johns Hopkins Hospital.”1 So for over a century, ...
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My Visit to OralDNA® Labs

Have you ever wondered what happens to your patient’s saliva sample once it arrives at OralDNA® Labs?  Many PDS®-supported offices have been using OralDNA® Labs to analyze the saliva of their patients, relative to the patient’s periodontal infection.  This service gives them more information about the types and severity of a patient’s infection, which is the cause of periodontitis.  Additionally, however, it tells us something about the bacterial load and a patient’s inflammatory response, w...
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