Ready to Stop Being a Prophy Machine?

Is your hygiene department ready to stop the daily routine of prophy after prophy? Are you ready to have a happier dentist and hygiene team, healthier patients, and overall transform your office into a stellar perio-focused practice? Instead of limiting yourself to 30-minute patient appointments for a prophy, affording hygienists one hour per appointment, or longer if SRP is scheduled, allows you to offer comprehensive perio services, like salivary testing, non-surgical perio therapy, and...
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My Staff Won’t Do It

There are many justifications, rationalizations, and excuses in non-testing practices, all of which signal some level of disinterest in enhancing patient care. One of the most difficult to understand is; “My staff/hygienist just won’t do it.” If the doctor is the driving force behind testing implementation and one or more team members are resistant, a staff meeting is in order. Leadership comes from the top and it is the doctor’s responsibility to set the direction for the practice, including th...
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Stop Diagnosing the Pocketbook

Cost is a consideration for all of us, which we take into account when deciding whether or not to purchase a wide variety of goods and services. Our responsibility as clinicians is to make recommendations to help patients achieve the best health possible, without letting our preconceived ideas about the patient’s ability to afford treatment get in the way – what I refer to as diagnosing the pocketbook. One of the things we do not know and cannot predict is how much value the patient puts on thei...
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More Insights Provided by Salivary Testing

One of the insights gained when using salivary testing is finding that good point to stop treatment. This therapeutic endpoint may be defined by the return to gingival health, reduction of pocket depth, and a stable clinical attachment level. In other words, the therapeutic endpoint tells us when we have done all we can do for the time, and let the remaining healing occur unassisted. With the easy availability of post-op bacterial testing, the therapeutic endpoint can now be expanded to include ...
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The Insights Provided by Salivary Testing

Without salivary testing we have no way of knowing the cause of the periodontal disease in the patients under our care. The insights provided by salivary testing include: Identification of the causative bacteria Therapeutic endpoint Risk assessment Outcomes assessment Risk of recurrence Appropriate antibiotic Incorporating the information from the salivary bacterial test into the perio patient’s treatment plan enables personalized care. Forget the one-size-fits-all of t...
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What Happens Once Samples Leave Your Office?

          The video entitled; "A Day in the Life of Dina the OralDNA Sample" explains how a salivary sample is analyzed at OralDNA Labs, ultimately resulting in a report indicating the specific pathogens involved in the patient’s case of gum disease. It is a highly informative animation of the various steps involved in identifying the bacteria in the salivary sample. The processes involved in sample analysis are presented with great clarity and conciseness...
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Bacterial ID, Easy as 1-2-3

Testing for the specific bacteria causing the periodontal disease for the patient in your chair is as easy as 1-2-3. The following is a detailed description of the sample collection: There is some sterile salt water; have your patient gargle and swish for 30 seconds. Have your patient spit into a vial, cap it, and stick the bar code label on the vial. You are now done administering the salivary test. No separate visit is necessary. It can be sent from the office later that day by anyone in t...
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Pregnancy and Periodontal Disease: It’s All About Prevention

There is a large body of research examining the potential association between periodontal disease and adverse pregnancy outcomes. Even a casual examination of the research reveals inconsistent conclusions regarding the effect of gum disease on preterm birth and other adverse pregnancy outcomes including preeclampsia. There is a similar level of inconsistency in the interventional studies. Some showed a reduction in preterm births following periodontal therapy and others did not. One study, b...
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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 ...
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We Were Always Taught

Dentists who were trained in the 70’s were always taught that the first instrument used in an operative procedure was the enamel hatchet. Caries excavation was done with spoon excavators and a belt driven low speed handpiece. We were always taught that reversible hydrocolloid was an excellent impression material, especially since you could use the same material on multiple patients. You just had to warm it back up in the water bath. We were always taught that we only needed to use a mask and...
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