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"Operatory Instrument Management Program Story" By Kathleen Bokrossy, RDH

I recently met a dental hygienist at a convention who showed great interest in the D-Sharp OIM program (Operatory Instrument Management) program.  She wanted to take the information back to her employer and see if she could ‘convince’ him to join.

The OIM Program is an instrument management program that supplies your operatory with new instruments every 4 months (if it is a full time op or an op that shares instruments between hygienists) or 6 months (if it is a part time op or an op that only has one hygienist).

 She understood all the benefits:

  • Puts systems in place; organizes your instruments; no handles to dispose of; makes sure that all the hygienists in your practice are using sharp instruments that are properly shaped…not sickle-ized curettes!
  • Ensures that you are providing the best care by using optimal instruments
  • Ergonomics (using dull instruments causes Repetitive Strain Injuries and will shorten your life span of your career
  • Saves money
  • Clients notice the difference when dull instruments are used.  They will complain and tell the receptionist that they don’t want that hygienist again…or they may leave the practice altogether!  Happy clients refer!  Angry clients will spread that news faster than if they were happy!

So a couple of weeks passed and I contacted the hygienist to see how she was doing and if she needed any information from me to give to the dentist.  She told me that her employer dismissed the program and that her and her husband had decided that her health is more important so she was going to get on the program and pay herself.  This was music to my ears.  I have been in the dental instrument business since I founded D-Sharp Dental back in 1998.  I am always looking at ways to help hygienists bring instruments into their practice without spending a fortune.  The more economical the instruments are, the more frequently you can replace them, the better it is for the hygienist and most importantly the client!  I have heard many hygienists complain too many times about their employers or their dentists not buying them instruments.  Or when they do the instruments are too far gone.  They complain how sore they are, how they can’t recognize the tips any longer, how they can’t get a sharp cutting edge, etc.  I know from personal experience that when dull instruments are used on you, it HURTS!!  When the experience is painful, clients will not come back to you.  Or they may come back less or … they may leave the practice altogether!  So I strongly believe in the hygienists taking ownership of their own instruments if they have to.  I spoke with one hygienist who said her employer has never bought instruments for her since she started working there.  I asked her how long that was.  She said 8 years!!  Why wait for your employer?   You can get on the program with one set even for $19.99 a month or if you have handles that can be re-tipped, you can always re-tip them for $11.98.   And trust me, you can’t tell the difference between re-tipped and new.  Well with our company anyhow.  I know of other re-tipping companies who use tips that are of lesser quality, and the tips are unrecognizable.  We re-tip your handles with the same tips that we use on our new instruments. They are of high quality, 440A North American stainless steel and are specially treated to keep a sharp cutting edge.  We need to stop blaming others for our discomfort or happiness and take responsibility for our own actions.  If you need to buy your own instruments, then I encourage you to do it.  Why wreck every day for you and the appointment for your client.  Get EMPOWERED!  Take control of your own destiny!  Your own future!  Get back to enjoying your day with new instruments that bite into the calculus versus an instrument that glides over.  Be gentle with your clients.  Sharp instruments mean you are going to use a lighter more controlled stroke, which means less discomfort for your clients during and after treatment and much better for your body!

This particular hygienist also said she was tired of waiting for permission.  She feels that as a dental hygienist she is always waiting for permission.  Permission from the dentist, permission from the client, permission from the insurance companies, etc.  She said this is something that she can take control of that will help her extend the life of her career and help her with overall daily comfort.  She felt so empowered.  She made me so proud that I just had to share this!


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"Is Your Dental Hygiene Department ‘A Diamond in the Rough?" by Kathleen Bokrossy, RDH

Imagine a dental hygiene department that focuses on continuing to improve the “Dental Hygiene Experience” for every patient that walks in the door.  Imagine a program that consistently delivers a positive physical, intellectual and emotional experience for each and every patient.  Imagine an office where every patient knows that they have a team of experts that are delivering important health care and are honestly motivated and interested in their long term well-being.  Wow, now that’s an image worth chasing!    

A well run, well executed dental hygiene program can be a tremendous asset to any dental practice looking to grow and prosper in these changing times.  It provides the opportunity to interact with your patients on a regular basis.  Repeated positive exposure to your practice is the key to growing a strong and loyal patient base that can lead to a steady stream of new patient referrals and increased restorative revenue.   Making the “Dental Hygiene Experience” great, is an important piece to the success in any dental practice.  This article looks to outline the 3 aspects that make up the “Dental Hygiene Experience”.  After reading this article, evaluate your practice and see where you think there is opportunity to tweak, adjust, or completely overhaul how your dental hygiene department interacts with your patients. 

Based on my 25 plus years, I believe that improving the “Dental Hygiene Experience” from the patient’s perspective can be broken down into three primary aspects:

 

1. The Patient’s Intellectual Experience:  We can often forget how important it is to educate the patient on the importance of good oral hygiene.  As we know, good oral hygiene is both a preventative measure as well as an early warning opportunity for patients.  Through education and an engaged “Dental Hygiene Experience” the dental hygienist is able to reinforce to the patient the importance of home care and regular visits.  Too often the dental hygiene visit has become so routine and perhaps rushed, that the dental hygienist doesn’t use this great opportunity to educate and inform the patient on all the wonderful benefits of maintaining optimal oral health.  The patient’s intellectual experience is about reminding them why they are spending the time, effort and expense of going to the dentist and dental hygienist.  Done creatively, honestly and by getting a patient intellectually engaged in the importance of overall good oral hygiene will lead to increased visit frequency and excited referrals to their friends and family.  Getting your entire dental team excited and communicating the tangible benefits of regular dental hygiene visits will grow your practice year after year. 

2. The Patient’s Physical Experience:  Creating a positive physical experience is an essential part of any dental hygiene visit.  That fresh invigorated feeling vs the discomfort that can be part of any dental visit needs to be consciously developed and built into your work flow.  

 

An uncomfortable dental hygiene experience reduces repeat visits, offers no referral opportunity and at the end of the day truly hampers the practices opportunity for growth and productivity.  It’s critical to look at the “Dental Hygiene Experience” from this aspect as there are so many specific things we can do to reduce the discomfort and increase the positive and invigorated feeling that a patient can have following treatment. 

Examples of proactive steps that can be taken:

a. Measurement:  You can’t improve what you can’t measure so make sure your patients know that you take their comfort very seriously.  Get the feedback you need to know whether your patients find their experience more painful than it should be and be sure to react to the data you collect!

b. Training: Technique matters!  Education doesn’t stop at dental hygiene school.  It is important that dental hygienists continue to participate in hands-on training to take their skills to the next level.

c. Instrument selection:  Using the correct instrument for its intended use, reduces unnecessary pain and discomfort.   

d. Instrument maintenance:  This one is very common and has an immediate impact on the patient experience.  Poorly managed and maintained instruments chairside increases patient discomfort, dental hygiene fatigue and negatively impacts all aspects of the experience.

e. New Technologies and techniques:  There are new technologies that are being introduced all the time.  Being aware of these new methods to manage and reduce pain can help keep your patients in your chair instead of requesting to move to another one! 

 

3. The Patient’s Emotional Experience:  The path to strong restorative referrals, increased dental hygiene visit frequency and increased dental hygiene treatment comes directly from the trust that the dental team is able to develop with the patient.  The patient has to believe that you are only recommending procedures that are truly in their best interest.  Trust is an emotional feeling and must be satisfied on two levels. 

 

a. Trust Level 1 – Capability:  The patient must believe that your team is best suited to recognize and provide the procedure being recommended.   This comes from how well your dental team delivers on demonstrating your technical competence.  Through education and ongoing communication you are able to demonstrate your dental team’s strength and capability.

b. Trust Level 2 – Intent:  The patient must believe that their best interests are at the heart of any recommended procedure made by your team.  They need to know why you are recommending the procedure and that you truly believe it’s in their best interest to proceed.

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Once you are able to build a culture that communicates strong specialized expertise (capability) combined with a heartfelt intent to deliver on important results to the patient, you will have a strong restorative referral machine that drives revenue into your dental office. 

There are specific and tangible things each office can be doing to move their ‘Dental Hygiene Experience’ in the right direction.    By intelligently integrating the patient’s physical, intellectual and emotional experience, you can turn your dental hygiene department into an exciting and invigorating aspect of your dental practice.  The dental hygiene visit is often a patients first exposure to you and your team, and as a result, that first impression is the opportunity to build a strong patient base that looks forward to their quarterly or bi-yearly visits and recommends your office every chance they get.  

So….is your dental hygiene department ‘a diamond in the rough’?   Even if your dental hygiene department runs like a well-oiled machine, I challenge you to revisit it from the patients perspective.  Look at all three aspects and continue to adjust and improve.  Continuous improvement after all is the key to long term fulfillment in life! 

I invite you to ‘Meet me in the Boardroom’ where we will be discussing The Dental Hygiene Breakthrough Blueprint.  I will share with you simple strategies that you can apply to your practice that will help you attract more patients, how you can wow them and get them referring.  Send me an email and I will send you all the details!  It will be fun!    


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"How to Release the ‘Intrepeneur’ Within! Series continued." By Kathleen Bokrossy, RDH

126 resumes for one position.  How do you make yourself stand out in today’s competitive market?

I have recently spoken with five dental hygienists on separate occasions regarding how tough the job market is right now.

The first one is getting laid off because the dentist needs to do the hygiene appointments.

The second one is waiting at home for a job to come along since she has sent many resumes out.

The third one is filling in on a maternity leave and not sure what will happen when the time is over.

The fourth is moving out of the province with hope of coming back one day to practice in Ontario.

The fifth is working in a practice where she is not happy and feels like she isn’t making a difference, she is frustrated and would like to work in a new practice but fears there is nothing available for her.

We’ve all heard when a position is available the practice gets flooded with resumes.  I recently heard that one practice received 126 resumes for one position.  

 

What you can do to make a difference, secure your workplace and/or make yourself marketable so that your resume stands out and you get offered the position?

or

You want to do these three things to secure your workplace or make yourself marketable so that your resume stands out and you get offered the position.

 

1. Specialization

Have you ever thought about what you specialize in?  We all specialize in something, whether it be perio, ortho, laser therapy, ultrasonics, communication, etc.   What you know and the talents you possess may be hidden.  Use your knowledge and expertise to help others and start thinking about the things you specialize in. Share it with your colleagues and clients.  Highlight this in your cover letter and include your hands-on training certificates in your resume.  Wouldn’t it look great on your resume if you were skilled and trained in both piezo and Cavitron technology?  Or how about specializing in motivation and communication?  Make note of the hands-on training courses that you have taken to increase your skill and perhaps communication!

 

2. Innovation

Have you brought a program or put a system in place within your practice that has been beneficial? Be innovative within your practice.  What programs or solutions can you offer your practice that will bring positive results with both client care and productivity?  Programs like the Crest Oral B practice building program Oral Health Solutions or an instrument management program like the Operatory Instrument Management program, where you are providing gentle care to your clients, saving the practice money and putting systems in place. The more value you can bring to your practice, the greater the chance is of securing your position within that practice.  Once you have implemented programs, make note of this on your cover letter and resume.  Talk about the success you have experienced. 

 

3. Connection

Connecting with people is so important and sometimes we have to make a conscious effort in doing so.  You want to make sure you are a team player within your practice, that you don’t get involved with office politics and ever talk about someone behind their back.  Be positive with your communication.  When you speak with your clients, get to know them.  Take some personal notes so that you can follow up with them. Stay connected and show them how much you care.  

Doing these three things and making a conscious effort will help secure your position in a competitive market and make you a more marketable candidate for any dental hygiene position!  What are you going to do to make you stand-out?!


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"How to Release the ‘Intrepeneur’ Within!" By Kathleen Bokrossy, RDH

It’s a common scenario.  You attend a continuing education course, a lecture or product demonstration at a conference.  The information shared is exciting, it offers the opportunity to truly change how the practice operates and/or the level of care the client will experience.  You can’t wait to share this practice-changing news with the team.  Unfortunately, when you explain what you think is the greatest idea ever; you are not greeted with the same enthusiasm.  With their arms crossed and their resolve to resist change solidly in place, the great idea dies a quick death.  Each objection they raise fills you with doubt about being able to follow through and implement the changes in order to reap the benefits.  You get drawn back into the daily routine and all the opportunity is quickly forgotten.  You and the practice slide back into the “rut” wondering why things aren’t improving and you’re not reaching your practice goals.  Well at least until the next course or lecture comes along when you repeat the entire cycle again.  How did Einstein define insanity?  “Repeating the same actions over and over and expecting things to change.”

If this isn’t a problem for you, then congratulations!  If you can introduce a new idea to your office, get the team excited and implement all the changes required, then you naturally exhibit the skills of an ‘intrepeneur’.  What is an ‘intrepeneur’?  One of the most valuable assets to any dental practice!  An intrepeneur doesn’t ‘own’ the practice but looks at how the practice runs and continues to introduce positive change, like it’s their own.  Whether change is through better client experience, which leads to greater client retention and attracts new clients into the practice, or efforts to reduce costs and increase revenue, an intrepeneur is an essential member of any dental team.  

The biggest difference between an entrepreneur and an intrepreneur is who needs to be “sold” on the game-changing idea.  Any change carries with it both risk and reward.  Where an entrepreneur in most cases risks their own time and money to move an idea forward, an intrepreneur risks the resources of their employer, in most cases, the dentist.  Presenting both the risks and the rewards in a manner that the team can understand is often the biggest barrier to change.  The good news?  Through some subtle changes in how you make your “pitch” to the team, you can dramatically increase your chance of success.  Follow these simple steps to ‘Release the Intrepeneur Within’ and drive positive change to your practice today!    

1.    Actions speak louder than words!  Focus on what matters. 

Show an active interest in the productivity of the practice.  Not all dentists will share their revenue numbers with you, and you don’t need to know everything, but you should have an idea of what revenue your operatory generates as well as your supply costs.  This change in focus made a huge difference for me.  When I started paying attention to what I was billing and the cost for each day, I began to understand where I was having a significant impact on overall profitability.  When I saw opportunities for improvement and pointed them out to the dentist, he/she saw that my focus was aligned with his/hers.    Showing your commitment to the practice consistently over time will build your credibility, so when you do bring forward ideas, the dentist will know your intentions and commitment is to implement positive change to the practice.

Warning: I believe positive client experience is THE most important aspect of any dental practice.  Be sure your efforts to manage costs and improve efficiency does not negatively impact how the client is  treated nor their overall perception.

2.    Do your Homework

Look for different ways that you can contribute to your team meetings by suggesting systems/processes that help increase productivity.  There are so many resources available today that offer great ideas that have been successfully implemented by other practices.  Resources such as; on-line education, continuing education courses or from the technical sales representatives that call on your office, there is no shortage of ideas that can be implemented. 

Warning:  The trick is to separate the good ideas from the great ones!  Introducing the flavor of the month will hurt instead of help your credibility.  It is important to do your homework to determine which ideas will deliver a measurable benefit instead of just being a distraction from what’s already working. 

3.    Prepare a Benefits summary that you can share with the team.   

If you would like to implement new technology, a product, a program or a system into your practice, you need to present your ‘case’ to the dentist AND the team.   By outlining the benefits as well as the risks into a single consistent summary, you can quickly address initial concerns and illustrate how the new idea will improve practice productivity.  It helps to engage the entire team when you get ‘buy in’ and there is an understanding of the total benefit available through the change.  Since different members of the team are affected in different ways, it is important that the total impact of the new idea is understood by all. 

It also demonstrates to the team that you are truly committed to the idea and will put forth the sustained effort necessary to see it through to the end.  

Prepare a document that you can share that has the following elements!

-       Current State

You need to understand and explain what the current situation is, related to the new idea, so that you can prepare a document that will show where you would like to be.  By identifying current inefficiencies or costs associated with the current method, it becomes possible to determine the net change of the idea you plan to implement.

-       Benefits of the new process

Create a list of the benefits that this new product, system or program can bring to your practice, and your clients.

-       Risks

Most people don’t like to talk about risk, but it is important to bring these risks forward and discuss them with the team.  Risks that aren’t exposed at the beginning appear to be bigger than they actually are and can sometimes highjack the idea during the implementation.

-       Proposed Costs

There are two types of costs that need to be identified.  The initial implementation cost as well as the ongoing operating cost.  Initial costs are the up-front costs and effort required to get the new process in place.  The operating costs reflect the specific time, effort and expense required to maintain the new process.

Summary:  Profitability and the Bottom Line

By comparing current costs to the proposed costs plus all the other benefits identified, it becomes possible to put together a single document that outlines the reasons (both fiscal and non-fiscal) to proceed.

 

For your reference, please find a few examples of how you can present your ‘case’:

 

1. Crest Oral B Program has a great program (www.healthypracticenow.ca) that is designed to help make the dental hygiene department more productive, it puts systems in place, recommendations for treatment, it empowers your clients and it involves the entire team.

 

On presenting this to your team:

a)     Show examples of a few current ‘recare’ clients:  How often they come in for treatment, the average revenue for each, what kind of treatment they receive, how long their appointments are and the self-care given to them.

b)     Show the same few ‘recare’ clients and apply the program to those clients and show the difference in the treatment received, the length of appointments, the frequency of the appointments, how the responsibility shifts to the clients, the team involvement

c)     Compare the revenue from the current situation to one of being on the program

d)     Show how the program works (visit the website and do the Practice Assessment together)

e)     Offer to bring in a sales rep if you need help to ‘close’ the deal, making sure that the dentist is present at the demo

 

2. Operatory Instrument Management Program (OIM Program) offered by D-Sharp, illustrates the potential savings associated with an instrument maintenance program versus what most offices do to maintain their instruments.  By plugging in your current situation, it is possible to use this format to evaluate whether moving to a managed program would deliver a significant benefit to your practice.  

a)     Show the current situation of your instruments:  How often your instruments get replaced, the cost of new instruments that you have purchased in the past, the organization of the instruments, purchasing of the instruments and the time spent, the sharpening situation, how much time it takes to sharpen, when do the instruments get sharpened, and if you can – the cost of the dental hygienist being paid for sharpening time.

b)     If you have a dental hygienist in your practice that you hear is “heavy handed”, note that.  Most times than not, it is the instruments in the hands of the dental hygienist rather than the dental hygienist him/herself.  Many clients try to switch dental hygienists or simply leave the practice.  Show the cost of losing a client (ex $10,000 over a lifetime of a client). 

c)     Show the benefits of being on the program for the client, the dental hygienist and the practice.

d)     Show the cost of the instruments per month by being on the program, and the time saved by not having to organize ordering, sifting through instruments to find the sharp ones, disposal of the instruments

 

3. An electronic periodontal probing method

a)     Show the current situation:  The time in the chair to probe, if an assistant is required and the cost associated with that.

b)     Show how this new technology will help you, the response of the client, the ease of use, the time saved.

c)     Compare the cost of the device to what it is currently costing you.

By being prepared, recognizing your current situation and knowing your facts, you will feel confident in presenting your case to your employer and your team.  By releasing the ‘intrepeneur within’, your practice will reap the rewards, your ‘job’ and professional satisfaction will soar, and you will become a valuable asset any office would be lucky to get.  

Warning:  If after consistently demonstrating your commitment to improve practice productivity, you do your homework and present well thought out strategies to improve the practice but you STILL can’t break in and help make a difference, you may not be in the practice that is best suited for you.  But that’s for a different article!!

Good luck!

 OMP

 


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"How prepared are YOU as a RDH to treat clients with exceptional needs?!" by Nadine Russell, RDH

I was discussing my “Clients with Exceptional Needs” presentation with some colleagues, when a fellow RDH had commented that her practice "just refers” all individuals with special needs for sedation.

Well, anyone who knows me or has attended any of my presentations KNOW that I am just a little passionate about this! So this makes me wonder…how prepared are YOU as a RDH to treat clients with exceptional needs?!

One of the very first topics I discuss in my presentations is that as Registered Dental Hygienists AND Regulated Health Professionals it is our OBLIGATION to know how to treat ALL clients…that includes those with exceptional needs.  It is the expectation of our College and of the public that as frontline oral health care providers that we have an understanding of and the ability to adapt our skills to serve this population. We are not auxiliaries; we cannot look to the dentist that employ us for guidance…it is our responsibility!!!

Here are some key points that I have highlighted in our Standards of Practice as outlined by the CDHO to support my statements:

“… dental hygienists have a social responsibility to promote access to, and delivery of, quality dental hygiene services”

“A dental hygienist demonstrates a commitment to professional responsibility by:

  • Using a client-centered approach that acts or advocates in the client’s best interest.
  • Contributing to actions that will support change and facilitate access to care; particularly in vulnerable populations.
  • Recognizing gaps in knowledge and taking the appropriate steps to acquire this knowledge.”   http://www.cdho.org/Standards+of+Practice.asp

All individuals are entitled the best possible care we can provide them…working with individuals with special needs is no different.  Some adaption to our “typical” routines can make this possible…that’s what client centered- care is. Assessing and recognizing the needs of our clients to be able to effectively provide them care.

The best way to better serve these clients is by arming yourself with knowledge!

As outlined in the CDHO Code of Ethics “PROFESSIONALISM- Is the commitment to use and advance professional knowledge and skills to serve the client and the public good.” http://www.cdho.org/Code+of+Ethics.asp

Being aware of our limitations and knowing when to refer is important, however; as professionals it is ESSENTIAL that we recognize when we lack the knowledge and then do something about it!

 

Yours In Health,

 

Nadine Russell, RDH


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Crest + Oral B "What's Your Story?" Campaign

In honour of Oral Health month this April, Crest + Oral B asked dental hygienists around Ontario to share their success story! 

Below are some incredible submissions we've received so far. Thank you so much to everyone who has participated so far, we are blown away by all of these! 

There is still time to send us your story! Click here for more information.

 

Deanna., RDH

 

I recommended The Crest & Oral B regimen to one of my clients who has Parkinson’s disease.  He has very much difficulty with his motor skills, especially with brushing and flossing.  After recommending this regimen to him approximately 4 months ago and sharing with him how much I like using these products, he immediately purchased the system.  I treat this particular patient every 4 months and was so thrilled that at his last maintenance appointment he presented with overall lower plaque and bleeding scores.  As well, this was his first appointment in over a year in which he had no recurrent decay!! He is very happy with the results and finds the Oral B electric toothbrush with Smart Guide to be very helpful with his dexterity and he loves that the Crest Multi-Protection mouth rinse doesn't burn his mouth or cause dryness.  These products, along with Glide floss are an excellent regimen and I will continue to recommend this to future clients!!

 

Zahra., RDH

I recently started recommending this to my patients and have found such a difference!  We have the soft tissue management program that we put patients, and for home care we discuss use of the oral B toothbrush alongside crest pro health rinse and toothpaste.  Patients that were complaining of bleeding for years and were confused, frustrated and found there is too much out there and no matter what they tried, nothing worked. After trying Oral B brush with crest products they have come back motivated and excited, and it is so rewarding as a hygienist to see this. Of course knowing the impact of a patients homecare regime and having the right tools and direction, makes this so important. Patients continue to return for their recare hygiene appointments motivated and more involved. This has truly allowed me to guide my patients in the right direction and made it easy to make a recommend products that I am confident work well. 

 

Tasia., RDH

This client was highly educated and well known in the community. He had pockets, was missing teeth, and had generalized bleeding and generalized recession. He took the oral-B challenge and was given direction on what to do and a demonstration. At the 3 month interval I saw him again for a cleaning and he said the toothbrush was crap and didn't work so he went back to a manual toothbrush. I assured him that it would help tremendously if using the oral-B electric toothbrush regularly. The client’s attitude was still negative. In another 3 months I saw him again and he was using the electric toothbrush 2x a day and his oral health had improved tremendously. No bleeding and pockets were all within normal. The client was so please to hear this and I was very impressed with the results and that he decided to give the toothbrush another chance considering he had scrubbed for the past 40 some odd years with a medium manual toothbrush. This client was very impressed with the results and was happy that I encouraged him to use the oral-B electric toothbrush again. He believed it was a great investment at that point! Success!

 

Jenessa., RDH

I had a patient who had come to see me after a few years of not having regular scaling and oral hygiene instruction. With this patient we completed periodontal probing and discovered that his periodontal condition had worsened. After discussing his treatment options, we decided the best course of action and I showed him the crest oral b products and he left that day purchasing the toothbrush and planning to begin the regimen. When it was time to do a re-evaluation his periodontal condition had drastically improved. My patient still consistently uses the regimen and his oral hygiene is healthy and stable!

 

Patricia., RDH

I implement the Crest and Oral B regime into every native reserve and rural northern community which I have the pleasure to work in. These communities are very appreciative for the education and products they receive. The oral health is improving within native reserves and rural communities as a whole due to the Crest and Oral B regime.  I have one particular gentlemen in mind who would benefit from receiving a power toothbrush. He has slight to moderate localized periodontal disease, has slowly improved his oral hygiene, but cannot afford a power toothbrush.  He would be elated if I was to present him with a power toothbrush and so ever grateful to Crest and Oral B.

 

Karen., RDH

I have been a long time believer and promoter of the Oral B Power brush to my patients. When Crest introduced "Oral Health Solutions" program I was excited for my patients!  I know how important it is to send the tools my patients need home with them after their dental hygiene appointment. I remember one patient in particular who was a real skeptic when it came to power brushes.  I had been recommending the Oral B power brush for a couple of years due to some health issues he had.  We could never get him to the point where he could say his gums didn't bleed when brushing.  When the Oral Health Solutions program was implemented I made him an offer he couldn't refuse.  Take the power brush, ProHealth toothpaste, ProHealth mouth rinse and floss to "try" for the next 3 months and if he still said his gums were bleeding I'd take the brush back. Well, 3 months later when I asked if he'd noticed any difference using the Oral B Power brush and Crest products he looked at me with a grin and said "I should have listened to you sooner. My mouth has never felt so clean between appointments!"  This patient has since said he will never use a manual toothbrush again.  I'm happy that his oral health has improved immensely and the patient is happy that he doesn't have to spend as much time in the dental chair! 

 

Susan., RDH

I have a special needs client who is in her late twenties. Since treating her in the office for several years it was a struggle to have her understand the need to remember her daily oral home care. Although she was so excited of the suggestion of a power brush, she quickly said her caregiver would never purchase one for her. With the support of our dentist we provided the client an oral b 2000 brush with the promise from the client that she would use it daily! The improvement is beyond what we would have imagined! The client even made a poster to remind herself to use her new brush daily. The improvement in her once bulbous, bleeding tissue is evident, and she proudly walks into every recare appointment saying “I am using the brush you gave me every day like you asked”. I can't say enough how implementing oral b power for several clients from special needs to Alzheimer's to orthodontic patients and periodontal clients I have seen great results on a daily basis.

 

Nikki., RDH

My name is Nikki and I am one of two orthodontic hygienists at Uptown Orthodontics in Oakville Ontario, led by Dr. Brenda Chekay. The entire team at Uptown takes our oral hygiene program very seriously. It is well known in the dental world how hard it is to maintain good oral hygiene with braces and to try to protect our client’s teeth from the dreaded decalcification. That is why we have implemented the Crest and Oral B OrthoEssentials program. We have noticed a significant difference in our clients overall hygiene throughout the course of their treatment. In one specific case, we had a young, very funny and outgoing girl, who was ready to start treatment, but her oral hygiene was very poor. She was determined to prove to us that she would improve her brushing and she was going to be one of our best clients. She did just that! 

 

Colena., RDH

I have many stories over the 14 years that come to mind regarding the benefits of oral-b products, in particular the oral-b electric tooth brushes. I was given my first electric toothbrush by oral-b while I was still a dental hygiene student. This gave me the opportunity to try it and love it! I saw an improvement in my own oral health. Naturally, this meant that I would recommend it to my clients so that they could improve their oral health as well. In the practice that I am currently working in, we often refer to an Orthodontist in Pickering, Dr. Tom. He gives a complimentary oral-b electric toothbrush to every client with braces! Recently one of these clients was my son Cory. I have seen firsthand how my son is able to maintain optimal oral health by using the oral-b electric toothbrush given to him by Dr.Tom. Cory and many other teens I see regularly are able to keep their mouth healthy even with braces on thanks to their electric toothbrush.

 

Sharyn., RDH

I'm so happy to have this opportunity to share the story of a beautiful client of mine. She has a progressive motor neuron disease that has left her unable to move anything from the chin down. Her oral health is very important to her, and her caregiver is the one to assist with her brushing. We review modifications in her techniques, and using the crest and oral b regimen have found improvements. She is the one person I know is deserving of a power toothbrush to help keep up her oral hygiene.

 

Jayne., RDH

I am an independent Dental Hygienist in NS and I also work at a LTC facility, there is a lady who has touched my heart there for the last 4 years I have been there, she is paralyzed from the neck down with MS and when I first saw her, her teeth were heavily stained, I have done cleanings regularly for her but her main concern is that the staff don’t know how to brush her teeth. She has had an oral B electric toothbrush for years but staff were not using it correctly. So with the help of a mirror and her toothbrush she has been able to explain to the staff how it should be done. Her oral hygiene has improved immensely and her cleanings are now very easy with minimal deposits. I sometimes just go to her room to floss her teeth as it feels so good to her. She is an amazing person and has an electric chair and laptop and even a phone which is all worked by a microphone device, she sends me emails at times. She truly inspires me, even enjoys the odd glass of wine.

 

Cynthia., RDH

My client was not spending enough time brushing his teeth with a manual toothbrush. His plaque levels where consistently high and his gums where bleeding! After recommending an oral B electric toothbrush, he was compliant on getting one. His plaque levels are now minimal, and his bleeding index is minimal as well. He is loves the dentist clean feeling after using his new oral b electric toothbrush. He is also now on a 6 month preventive frequency versus the 3 month re-care he was on.

 

Diane., RDH

A long term client of mine, a middle aged male, with full dentition, received a gold crown on #46.There were fairly deep buccal margins due to previous cervical restorations.  On his recall, he presented with marked inflammation and bleeding gums on the buccal aspect of #46.   Possibly crown lengthening should have been done before preparation. Once I was sure the area was free of any cement or calculus, I provided oral hygiene instruction, suggesting at first sulcular massage with a manual toothbrush. Next recall, (he was on a 3 month perio scale recall), there was only minor improvement in bleeding. I made the decision to suggest an electric toothbrush, specifically the Oral B toothbrush, which I demonstrated in the office. There was noticeable improvement on the next visit, so I reinforced his oral hygiene and commended his efforts. I expressed my view that healing takes time, and to continue what he was doing.  Two years later, the gingival looked pink and healthy! Probing had reduced from 5 mm to 3 mm. He was extremely happy, as he was concerned that either he might lose the tooth or have to see a periodontist!  Kudos to the Oral B Electric Toothbrush!!!

 

Joy., RDH

My favourite success story involves a very unlikely participant.  A 76 year old NEW client visited my office.  He had not had dental or periodontal care for over 20 years.   After an evaluation, I had to inform him that his treatment would require at least 5-6 visits of scaling and evaluation.  He did not have dental insurance so I was concerned how he would react to the estimate of costs.  But he made the necessary appointments and we started his treatment. After his first treatment visit, I gave him my recommendations for home care and was happy to be able to start him off with Crest samples from our office.  With each successive appointment for quadrant treatment, his oral hygiene kept improving.  When I asked him what changes he had made, he replied, "Well, I'm just doing everything you told me to."  He pointed to the Oral B power brush on my display and told me he had bought "that one" and he was using the Crest Pro-Health toothpaste and mouthwash and proxy brushes for the large gaps between his molars.  The results were dramatic.  This gentleman is still one of my best clients and has kept up his oral health ever since. I learned such a valuable lesson in my dental hygiene career and I was so proud of my client.  Who says you can't teach an 'old dog new tricks'? 

 

Natasha., RDH 

I am writing to tell you how excited I have become with the Crest Oral B oral health products. In Dec. 2012 I was very excited to have my first permanent hygiene job. It was a small rural office and the staff and clients were warm and friendly.  The only problem was that despite this being a well-established practice with experienced staff, none of the hygiene clients had ever really been regularly maintained or given the tools and resources to properly maintain their oral health at home between routine hygiene visits. My first couple of months were overwhelming as my days were filled with poorly maintained clients. I tried my best to educate them about their oral health.  Despite my best attempts I felt like my clients hated me, I gave them bad news about their periodontal conditions, their cleanings were uncomfortable and I wanted to see them more often than they had ever come in for routine cleanings before. I dreaded coming to work and wondered if I had made a mistake in my chosen career. Then one day a box of Crest and Oral B sample products and information arrived at our office. This inspired me to try a new approach and motivate my clients not only though education and explanation but also to give them sample “tools” they could use to reach their oral hygiene goals.  During each cleaning appointment I would educate my clients on periodontal disease, the inflammation process, the systemic correlation and what home care was required for them to manage their specific condition. At the end of the appointment each client would go home with a “goody bag” of tools they could use to help improve their condition.  I saw an improvement in the oral health of my clients as soon as they returned for their 3 & 4 month recare appointments. . Not only were my clients inspired to improve their oral health, they now felt they were in control of their condition as they had been given the Crest Oral B products they needed. I have continued to see marked improvement in all most all of my regular hygiene clients. I have now been working in this office for almost 18 months and my clients are so inspired by the changes they have seen in their oral health that I have gone from being booked up 1-2 weeks ahead to 4-5 months ahead. I now enjoy my role as an RDH in a small rural practice and look forward to going to work each day.  My clients also eagerly look forward to their Crest Oral B “goody” bag at the end of each appointment.

 

Chantal., RDH

I have too many to share really...I suppose the most gratifying is that I hand out Oral-B brushes not only to my clients but to people in the community that are not able to purchase them on their own such as our local food bank or community soup kitchen. I promote these brushes because I believe in the product. For instance, I've recommended "sensitive brushes" for those with recession or abrasion. These clients enjoy brushing with a "softer" brush head knowing they are helping prevent further damage to their gums. I also use the Oral-B atlas every day to help educate my clients on the stages of periodontal disease. It's amazing how a picture says a thousand words! Once they understand what a periodontal pocket is, they are more willing to take part in their oral care at home. April is oral health month and I volunteer my time as a dental hygienist in the community by offering presentations to preschoolers and seniors. It's gratifying knowing that I can help make a change in people’s lives and more so with a great product such as Oral-B.

 

Ann., RDH

Here’s a story, I hope it will be a success story, time will tell.  I had a client that purchased a oral b automatic tooth brush a few months ago.  After starting my assessment on the client, I asked if she had been using her new toothbrush, this is when I found out that she had not and that she was somewhat intimidated with technology and was afraid to open the package and plug in the rechargeable brush.  At the end of her appointment I opened a new Oral B power brush, reviewed all the components and proper use of the brush.  I feel confident that at her next appointment I will see a huge improvement in her dental hygiene health.  It was a reminder that what may be simple and easy for one person may not be as easy for the next.

 

Sara., RDH

I remember years ago, I had a 13 yr. old male, wearing full orthodontic brackets. I had advised him and his parents that once ortho begins that it would be beneficial to see this client every 4 months for his routine maintenance. As most good parents they were on board, the client wasn't so excited. After just 4 months of full brackets this client had very poor oral hygiene and was not taking the importance of this matter to heart. He clearly had many class V demineralization areas. That I knew would lead to full blown decay if we didn't do something dramatic to change this. I recommended an Oral B electric toothbrush. His parents went out that same day and purchased one. Fast forward 4 more months and oral hygiene had dramatically improved and he seemed to be on board with the importance of clean teeth and full braces. His parents thanked me for the suggestion that quite obviously worked.

 

 

Sandy., RDH

Three years ago I finally started using my Oral-B professional care 5000.  It was given to me by Oral-B when I graduated from hygiene school.  It sat on my shelf for a couple of years and one day I decided to start using it as I was noticing plaque and I just wasn't getting things as clean as desired.  It wasn't until I started using this brush that my brushing went from good to excellent!
 I was so impressed by the ease and effectiveness that it totally sold me on the whole "power brush movement".  I searched the market for a good, cost effective, and plaque effective brush and found what I considered a well-priced Oral B Vitality.  It was a reputable make that I was confident in and it was at a price point that potential "new users" would be willing to pay and try it.
 Two -three years later, our entire hygiene staff have sold over 300 brushes and the entire power brush program is a hit in our dental office(s)!   Great reviews from patients including - easy to use, less plaque, feeling cleaner, less stain, etc.  A large majority of our patients are now using Oral B power brushes.
 Best of all we have seen incredible results from increased patient compliance and enthusiasm for their oral self-care at home, less bleeding, less inflammation, etc.  We are big supporters of Oral B power brushes and they really are great for our patients (and ourselves).
 I'm a happy user and promoter!  I love Oral B power brushes!
 


Felicia., RDH

So here it is, I hold the client dear to my heart.

I met this client shortly before she got into a car accident which left her with severe pain in her wrist, 4 months later she came in for her perio appointment. I asked her how'd she'd been doing informed of her accident when updating her medical and quickly apologized  for the state of her oral hygiene as she wasn't able to adapt her wrist as she used to. After letting her know that there were a wide range of dental products by crest and oral b that can help her she was poised and excited. 4 months later she was doing great! Oral hygiene significantly improved thanks to the new floss piks and electric brush purchased after our visit.

  

Agatha., RDH

As a registered dental hygienist working in a family practice, I see evidence of the improvements that electric toothbrushes make in the oral health of numerous clients.  One of the most challenging populations for home care improvement is children and it is extremely rewarding when a parent and/or child reports on how much easier it is to maintain good oral hygiene with an electric toothbrush, like the Oral B.  

 

Julia., RDH

One of the clients that came to the office I work at suffers from Parkinson Disease.

Due to the decrease in muscle movement and coordination caused by the disease, he used a cane to walk and moved slowly and he had decreased range of motion in relation to the stretching of his muscles and lacked facial expression .As the disease progresses, the client may lose more and more of the ability to clean his teeth .These findings, in addition to the loss of muscle control in the oral cavity determined me to recommend the use of an Oral B electric toothbrush for him to use.

Clients with Parkinson Disease may be better served with a power toothbrush due to their limited dexterity.

  

Saima., RDH

I was once at a seminar and got to visit the booth for crest and oral B. They were handing out samples for crest whitening toothpaste which I used for a month before suggesting it to my patients.  I also got to purchase oral B powered toothbrush. I fell in love with both and called the company if they can send me samples and brochures which I did and started handing out to patients and recommended it as # 1 as per my personal experience.  Every patient who I handed out the samples came back with 100 percent positive response.  Responses like " I love the way my teeth feels", "love the result, suggesting it to all my family and friends", "does wonders to my teeth".

Seeing my patients happy and satisfied with the results, I feel so pleased and excited that it often brings tear of joy to my eyes.  Thank you crest & oral B.

 

Geraldine., RDH 

I am a Registered Dental Hygienist and I have been implementing this regimen with many of my clients! I have found through having my clients using the floss/brush and mouth wash that many clients are experiencing a much fresher cleaner feeling. I have also noticed much less areas of gingival inflammation due to plaque formation. Clients love to have great reports when leaving the dental office!

 

 Jessica., RDH 

I have a passion for Oral B electric toothbrushes and how amazing they are! They are so effective in a client’s overall oral hygiene! I recently had a patient from Libya never been to a dentist before, saw her over several appointments and explained to her and showed her importance for brushing twice per day, flossing, rinsing with Crest products and using a power brush - the results were so incredibly rewarding for me as a hygienist! And I'm proud to share the results! The response from the client was overwhelming - like I said this is why I love my job - very rewarding to make a difference in the world! I recommend and seek Oral B electric brushes every day! And they DO make a difference!

Thank you Oral B for making that difference!

 

Dorie., RDH

My career spans 27 years of Dental Hygiene and I have seen a lot of oral health success in that number of years. This is why I continue to be employed in the wonderful field of Dental Hygiene.  Numerous clients come to mind when I think of Oral B powered tooth brushes.  If I have to narrow it down to one that made me feel like I had really made a huge difference it would have to be a 17 year old male. He was a new client that had not been to a dental office in a number of years. He was a bit shy and did not smile. He attended the office with his girlfriend that day. Upon examination I notice he was a night time mouth breather. As a result, his maxillary anterior arch displayed very red, puffy inflamed gingiva with spontaneous bleeding. I recommended the crest oral health toothpaste as well as the oral health rinse.  We then discussed purchasing an oral B powered tooth brush and he was very happy to have some aids to improve his smile.  His recare follow -up appointment was booked for 14 days.  When he returned, he was very happy, confident and smiling much more.  Upon examination the inflammation had drastically subsided and the inflammation very much improved!  He finally had the smile always wanted! I was thrilled at the results to say the least.  His at home oral hygiene and the crest products combined had made all the difference that was needed.  Another Crest success story indeed!  Thank you Crest for making amazing products!

 

Marcy., RDH 

I have been a hygienist for 5 years now and I love every aspect of my job especially oral hygiene education and instruction. I have been working at my current practice for 3 years now and developed a great rapport with all my clients. A female client was coming in every 6 months for her maintenance appointments but after my first cleaning with her I thoroughly reviewed oral hygiene instruction such as tooth brushing with a manual tooth brush, flossing and implementing a sulcabrush for wisdom teeth areas. She was thrilled with the new technique given and very happy about the new knowledge she gained at her appointment. We increased her maintenance appointments to every 3 months to better her hygiene and oral health. At this time her pockets have reduced, recession is stabilized, gingivitis is reversed and she is more motived and very compliment with her hygiene at home.  She just had her first baby 5 months ago and was so appreciate to learn the importance of good oral hygiene not just for herself and her oral health but also for the health of her baby!

 

Donna., RDH 

I am a registered Dental Hygienist and I practice in a couple of offices which ends up being full time.

I also have an occasional position part-time working at Costco every few months. Here I get to 

inform people of the many benefits of using Oral-B and Crest products to improve their oral health and

therefore their overall health. I've just finished working on the Oral Health Month Campaign where I showed

people Glide Floss, Crest Pro Health Rinse, Crest 3-D White Paste to name just a few of the products and

everyone seemed very excited to try them. I was happy to create such an interest in people using the 3 

steps of: brush-floss-rinse in their daily routine. Just prior to this, I worked on the Oral-B Spring Power

Campaign 2014 where I captured the interest of many shoppers and converted them over to the Oral-B

electric brush because of the many benefits. So many shoppers were already using this brush and were 

purchasing additional ones for other family members or as gifts for people that it just verified the loyalty people

had to this product. 

This is my story on how I have had an effect on clients and recommended Crest and Oral-B products, especially

the Oral-B electric brush to patients.

 

Andrea., RDH

I have been a practicing registered dental hygienist for 3 years now, and being able to see progress and improvement with client’s oral health is a great accomplishment. I recommended the Oral-B electric toothbrushes regularly to my clients. One client in particular, I have seen a dramatic decrease in bleeding on probing, overall tissue appearance, and the client’s attitude towards becoming healthier. I would love to have the opportunity to give a toothbrush to a client in need, in particular a client who can't afford one, to help them with their oral health.

 

Joanna., RDH

I have a senior client who is bed bound (due to a stroke) in a long term care facility. I do bed-side dental cleanings for her every three months.  Her mouth was coated with heavy plaque, heavy bleeding and moderate generalised calculus with material Alba.  I had immediately recommended an oral B electric toothbrush and gave an oral hygiene demonstration to her full time caregiver.  They followed my instructions and my client's mouth was transformed.  It was like I was treating a different mouth!  There was significant reduction in deposits, bleeding and inflammation.  My client and her caregiver beamed with my praise and affirmation and she told me her dental cleanings are a lot more comfortable now.  This further reinforced the benefits of continuing to use the Oral B electric toothbrush.  It just shows that you are never "too old" to improve your oral health!  

I personally love the small brush head which forces clients to brush one tooth at a time.   The timer feature also trains clients to brush for longer and holds them accountable.  I consistently see improvements in oral health with the implementation of an Oral B electric toothbrush in a client’s oral care routine.   



Kathy., RDH

Being a coupon clipper has not only benefited me and my family but many of my clients too.  I regularly bring in Oral B and Crest coupons that I clip from my newspaper inserts and use them as motivational tools to encourage clients to try the Crest and Oral B Regimen. One client in particular was a long time toothbrush scrubber and told me she just couldn't get out of the habit.  As a result she had generalized sensitivity, red inflamed gingiva and recession. I gave her a $5 off coupon for the Oral B vitality toothbrush and explained to her how her technique will change, and, in turn reduce further recession and sensitivity. Nine months later she returned and raved about how much she loved the brush noting that her gums were no longer sore and sensitivity was reduced. Her gingival margins were all pink in color and there was no further recession. She mentioned she probably would not have bought the brush had I not gave her a coupon. Feel good moment for both of us!!

 

Jessica., RDH

After implementing the three step program into our office (Paste, rinse, and brush) I noticed my clients were increasingly eager to ask me about their progress and how there gums/mouth was looking. Rather than waiting for me to do a full exam and comparison, many would sit down and as soon as I laid them back asking “So how does everything look?” My patients can feel and see the difference and are proud to show me their mouths now and await my positive feedback :). 


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Happy New Year! So Much To Be Thankful For...

By Kathleen Bokrossy, RDH President   

As the New Year is quickly approaching I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you…

Thank you to those of you who came to our beautiful new facility in Stoney Creek, Ontario.  Thank you to those who came more than once :) Having the opportunity to meet you and get to know you all on a personal level is such a thrill for me.

Thank you to those of you who joined our 2013 Power Group.  We hope you enjoyed the Powerful Series of webinars and were able to take away some powerful tips that can help you in your dental hygiene practice. Our 2014 Study Group webinars are all planned with some great topics coming your way!

Thank you to those of you who participated in our webinars and online courses from the comfort of your home.  I am thrilled that we are so fortunate to be able to share education this way.

Thank you to our Portfolio Manager members.  Thank you for your positive feedback and continuous support.  Beth and I are so thrilled to be able to help demystify the Portfolio process.

Thank you to our dental hygiene facilitators, Jenn Turner, Jeannette Kulik, Nadine Russell and Sue Ellen Umali.  You truly help make the day run smoothly.

Thank you to the rdhu team, Dale, Michelle and Chelsey, who are so dedicated to helping our members.

Thank you to our presenters and corporate partners who help us deliver foremost current education and technology.  We couldn’t do this without you. A special thank you to our corporate partner and my personal friend, Jo-Anne Jones, who’s guidance and wisdom always helps us propel to the next level.

Thank you to the cast of The RDH View, Jo-Anne Jones, Beth Ryerse and Anna Louise Tolan.  You each are a joy to work with, fun and so knowledgeable; I look forward to our 2014 webcasts.  We have some great shows planned for this year!

I am really excited for next year.  This year, we started focusing on helping empower the dental hygienist to think outside the box.  We have written articles and delivered webinars to help spread the message on what is possible.  We will continue on this mission in 2014.  I am elated by the number of emails and phone calls from our members saying that because we suggested something, they were able to find work, or to bring value to their practice and are feeling revived about our profession.  There are so many great things coming our way that I am truly looking forward to 2014.

We are opening a new location in Belleville Ontario, for those of you who live East of Toronto and have never made the trek out to Stoney Creek.  We are coming to you.  This doesn’t mean that you still can’t come to Stoney Creek.  :)  It means you now have 2 locations to choose from.

Bev Woods will be the Educational Coordinator for rdhu East.  Bev has years of experience that she is excited to share and bring to rdhu!  Stay tuned for more information…

The best thing for me this year, is that I have heard from so many how they have learned so much this year from their experience at rdhu.  Some have new business ventures, some have a new understanding of our Quality Assurance program and look forward to planning in the future years, some have an increased skill and see a great improvement with their clients.  I feel so fortunate that a dream that I had 5 years ago now has grown into something that we all take pride in.  Our membership is now over 8000.  We could not have done this without your help and guidance.  So I thank you.

Wishing you a Happy New Year!  May 2014 bring you much health and happiness, success and fulfillment.

See you next year at rdhu!

 


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