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 ...
More

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...
More

Do You Speak HPV? Part 1

Dental professionals are often uncomfortable approaching patients on topics that are unfamiliar or that feel outside the realm of “traditional” dentistry.  One such topic is Human papillomavirus (HPV).  As a hygienist of 40 plus years, I can tell you this topic never came up in my education.  Several years ago, I had to educate myself about this near epidemic viral infection. Most importantly, I had to step out of my comfort zone to find a way to share this crucial knowledge with my patients...
More

MyPerioProgress® – Curve Up Ahead

When utilizing salivary diagnostic testing, most cases we encounter will “fit the mold”. We will also encounter many unique cases where we must expand our horizons and consider other possibilities for our patients’ responses to treatment. In my career, I have found these types of cases to be the most rewarding.  In my recent blog, MyPerioProgress®-Your Road Map, we reviewed a scenario where a patient’s periodontal therapy outcome and the bacterial profiles were not aligned after treatment - ...
More

Interview with Ashley Leiterman

Dr McGlennen: Tell me how you use OralDNA® salivary diagnostics. Ashley RDH: I use OralDNA® salivary diagnostics to assist with the diagnosis and treatment planning of periodontal disease. The MyPerioPath® and Alert 2™ testing options are typically the tests we recommend most frequently. Dr McGlennen: What are the top two things to consider when you select a patient for testing? Ashley RDH: I consider the history of their disease. I routinely recommend testing for any patient who is...
More

Interview with Chelsea Gonzales, DDS

Dr McGlennen: Tell me how you use OralDNA® salivary diagnostics. Dr Gonzales: We use OralDNA® to create a customized plan for treating our patient’s periodontal disease. We also use it to gauge the success of their periodontal treatment and revised home care regimens. Salivary diagnostics enables us to treat the patient’s whole health by tying their periodontal condition to their medical history and treating the specific bacteria that could be contributing to multiple health conditions. ...
More

I Don’t Need That, We’re Already Getting Good Results

The enemy of optimal patient care is complacency. Why would anyone settle for good results when optimal results are so easily achieved? Put yourself in your patient’s place in the exam chair: would you then want only good enough? Patients trust their dental professionals to provide the voice in decision regarding their care. If given the choice between practicing blindly, with no information about the specific bacterial cause of their individual case of periodontal disease, and having the ba...
More

Drug Allergy vs. Drug Intolerance

A mark of a great diagnostician is one who can avoid complications through a process of taking an expert medical history. One area of practice where taking a history is critical, if not life saving, is documenting the potential of side effects from prescribed medications, in particular antibiotics. Patients are quick to state, “I’m allergic to that medication”. But what do they mean by that? Allergies are not the same as drug sensitivity or intolerance, and the earnest clinician needs to fig...
More

Caries Risk Assessment Duo: The Canary System® and OraRisk® Caries

In the past, controlling or treating dental caries meant restoring all areas of decay. After which, the patient was believed to be “caries controlled” until something new developed.  We now know that this thinking is flawed.  Filling or restoring caries does not treat the disease, only its effects on the tooth.  In 2001, the National Institute of Health defined caries as a disease resulting in the destruction of tooth structure by acid forming bacteria found in dental plaque in the presence ...
More

“New Hat” for the RDH— Oral Systemic Health Educator & Certified Lifestyle Coach

Why would the Complete Health Registered Dental Hygiene team find themselves in inter-professional collaboration with the Certified Lifestyle Coach? The answer begins with understanding that the war raging inside of us is between chronic inflammation and the body’s own host response. We’re not aware of this war because it doesn’t hurt, and we can’t see its effects since it’s going on at a cellular, even a molecular level. The mouth happens to be a major battleground in this war. Unlike a ...
More