“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 ...
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Patient Communication is Essential for Patient Acceptance

As a dental hygienist in Minnesota, I complete a professional portfolio to maintain my license. One of the core competencies is Patient Communication. As healthcare professionals we guide patients to better health through communicating therapy needs, providing the latest education and motivating patient self-care. Salivary diagnostics allows the clinician to have an objective measurement provided by a credentialed clinical laboratory. However, before the clinician and patient can benefit fro...
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Periodontal Pathogens & Rheumatoid Arthritis

Trends in Salivary Testing wishes you a Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy this blog re-post from 12/30/2016. In December 2016 researchers from Johns Hopkins University published a study in Science Translational Medicine indicating an identified link between periodontal disease and rheumatoid arthritis (RA). It would perhaps be more accurate to indicate that rather than periodontal disease being the causative agent, the perio pathogen Aggregatibacter Actinomycetemcomitans (A.a.) was found to be in...
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Interview with Tonja Willey RDH, MS–Dental Hygiene Instructor

Dr McGlennen: Tell me how your students use OralDNA® salivary diagnostics. Tonja Willey RDH, MS: Our students’ select one patient with moderate to severe periodontitis for a special program called Senior Capstone project; Perio Project. The goal of this project is to have the student follow one patient from the New Patient Consultation through all the steps of therapy in hopes of improving health or finding a more stable condition. The program fee ($175) includes several types of tests in...
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JP Institute TRANSFORMED! — My New Life As A Hygienist

I have been a clinical hygienist since 1979. When I earned my degree in Dental Hygiene, I was very happy, idealistic and excited about caring for patients. I felt I was on a mission to improve people’s lives through better oral health. Being young and starry-eyed , I was not prepared for the reality of working in a dental practice. I found, to my great surprise, that most of my patients were not interested in the education about their oral health that I had been trained to provide. They just...
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A New Conversation with Your Patients

How do we introduce the idea of salivary testing to our patients? As is the approach with every dental procedure or service we recommend for our patients, the primary consideration is excellent communication. Some recommendations are routine and no explanation is necessary, including fillings and fluoride, among many others. When we introduce new procedures or services to our patients some explanation is appropriate. DNA salivary testing for bacteria is a good example. So what should we say w...
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Education and Encouragement through Connecting and Commitment: An Interview with Rosie Jimenez

Dr McGlennen: Tell me how do you use OralDNA® salivary diagnostics.  Rosie RDH: Let me begin by sharing; I have been very fortunate to work in practices that support my passion for treating periodontal disease. My patients have benefited through the communication, assessment and treatment I provide. I know there are hygienists who feel they are not supported in their efforts. In honor of dental hygiene month, my advice- stay strong, keep educating yourself on new technologies and keep ask...
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Communicating with Patients about Nicotine and Perio

During a recent in-office team workshop, we were discussing nicotine use and its dramatic effects on the progression of periodontal disease. To help the team fully understand the consequences of nicotine use, we talked about vasoconstriction and how smoking masks the true level of periodontal infection. The vasoconstrictive properties of smoking reduce blood flow and, in turn, oxygen to the tissue, resulting in gums that do not bleed or have reduced bleeding. Smoking patients have pockets th...
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