Monday, November 29, 2010

Soo Sweet!

I know this sounds corny, but this video turned my crappy day into a smile. Enjoy.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Dental Hygenists - The Ugly Truth

Wow. I have come across the BEST rant about dental hygenists: Dental Hygenists - The Ugly Truth.  (Oh, sorry, they claim it's "not" a rant.)

It's basically a person going off about how hygenists have barely any schooling, "A 7-year old can learn the same amount of information from reading a Sesame Street book on dental hygiene," but act like they know everything because they have big egos. Hygenists clearly don't claim to have as much schooling as doctors, but depending on the state/province we have 2-3 years of schooling that involves microbiology, pharmacology, radiography, and local anaesthesia to name a few.

Then the person starts talking about getting conflicting information on how stiff or soft their gums are. Well, sorry to tell them, at least in Canada there isn't a "gum stiffness" score. The measurements we do on gums are the amount of recession and probing depths, to determine whether or not they have gum disease, what kind and to what severity.

I understand that people don't like to be lectured, and some hygenists probably go about it the wrong way, but personally, when I teach my patients the best way to brush and floss it's because I want them to have healthy gums in able to keep their teeth as long as possible, ideally for life. If I do it, it's because there are visible signs in their mouth, either large amounts of plaque that aren't getting brushed or flossed away, or swollen, bleeding gums. And actually, NO, the majority of the population don't know how to brush their teeth properly, or haven't been taught yet, or I wouldn't try to help. Getting defensive isn't going to heal your gums.

Perhaps other hygenists bluff answers to your questions, but I encourage my patients to ask questions, and if I don't have the answer I'll ask the dentist and find out for them. Sometimes there isn't an exact answer to give, so I'll give one or two explainations for a problem.

I agree that a trip to the dentist should be a pleasant experience. And we do aim for it to be as painless as possible. If it hurts to get your teeth cleaned it's probably because there has been plaque sitting on the gums causing inflammation. And these inflammed gums are more prone to bleeding. The cleaner your teeth are the less it will hurt next time. This is another reason I like to demonstrate brushing/flossing technique... So cleanings are more comfortable to the patient. (And for severe cases we do offer freezing. )

It does help to be a "people person" as a hygenist... and I try to bond with the patient as well as possible, learn their individual needs, and address them. I'm always telling my clients that this is a team effort, I'll clean their teeth when they come in, answer any questions, keep them posted how their gums are doing, and show them how to clean them at home the best way possible. Then it's up to the patient what they want to do with the info.

If you feel you are being treated badly to your hygenist say something. And never be afraid to ask questions.

Another Dental Rant!

I'd also like to address another rant I found linked to this one: Why I Hate the Dentist.

They address the fact that there are always new hygenists when they go in. Unfortunately this isn't neccessarily the hygenists' fault. It's a bad market for us right now, and it's hard to find a full-time job. Most hygenists I know would like to find an office that treats them well and gives them full time. If they found this they'd have no problem working and seeing the same patients all the time. We prefer to get to know patients so we can really work with you to get your teeth and gums into the best shape possible.

This person basically knows what they're talking about when it comes to brushing: "Here is the thing - you have to properly brush at your gum line to get rid of dental plaque, but if you brush too hard, and for too long, your gums may recede. If you don't brush enough, plaque will build up, and cause your gums to recede. It is one of those damned if you do, damned if you don't things."

I tell my clients all the time that it's a Catch-22; You need to brush the gumlines, but not too hard. Brushing too hard does cause recession which can increase tooth sensitivity. Not brushing enough or missing the gumlines won't cause recession, but gum disease, which causes gum sensitivity. It does take practice.

Here is a basic idea: brushing should take about 2 minutes. To avoid brushing too hard try holding the toothbrush between your thumb and 2 fingers only. Place the toothbrush right along the gumline at a 45 degree angle into the gums. For about 10 seconds do small, light circles along the gums, and then sweep the plaque away. If you are using an electric toothbrush all you need to do is place the brush head on your tooth surface along the gums, and then angle in/out of the "cracks" between teeth. You only need a light touch, as the toothbrush does the work for you.

And as for the fact that their dentist may have done a root canal to address a sensitivity issue... Most dentists will recommend some sort of sensitivity toothpaste first, and only do root canals in cases where decay is very deep to the nerve, there is severe pain, or an abcess/pus present visually in the mouth or on an x-ray. As for the filling/crown issue it's a problem of how much tooth structure is left in the tooth. If there is a very large filling in the tooth (more filling than actual tooth structure left) a crown will be suggested because at one point this tooth WILL crack. Yes, we do like to preserve as much tooth structure as possible, but a too-large filling isn't recommended. However, your dentist should work with you to address any money concerns (eg, can only afford a filling not a crown) and prioritize what needs to be done first. If you feel that your dentist is over-prescribing then get a new dentist, one that comes recommended by others.

If you feel you are being treated unfairly... say something. Hopefully your dentist/hygenist care enough to address your needs. If not, find some that do.

Friday, November 19, 2010

New Lizard Species Discovered... to be Delicious?

All you science geeks like myself should enjoy this one:

A new, all-female species of lizards (named Leiolepis ngovantrii) has been discovered by scientists in Vietnam.

All-female you ask? Well how does that one work? Well, the little babies are clones of their mothers, a not-unheard of trait in lizards, apparently.

A scientist at the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology discovered the creatures while visiting a small village and asked a restaurant owner to keep them safe until he came back with two American colleges.

Well, what did the buffet owner do? Got drunk and fried them up for his customers!

Luckily, when they returned the locals, who had known about the lizards for years, helped the scientist wrangle up a few more.

For the full story visit CNN.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Monday, November 08, 2010

Pyatt Power

Another sports blog quoted me recently.

Ok, well this time I don't know if they actually quoted me or my blog, or just some other random girl named Danielle who also thinks that Taylor Pyatt is man-pretty.

"He's a good-looking guy," gushes Danielle. "He's got pretty-boy eyes."

It's definitely something I've said, or would say. If it's not me I need to meet this name-twin of mine.

Check it out: Canucks Fans Love Their Pretty Boys - NHL Fanhouse.
Oh and one more funny fact: According to another sports blog he's dating a girl named Danielle, who may or may not be the real one quoted above: Taylor Pyatt's Girlfriend - Talk Sports. This Danielle is quoted as being a "gold digger" with "long blonde hair and blue eyes" who apparently pretends to have a sibling when she doesn't. It's some pretty good lady drama if you take a look.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Making Changes

Hey Y'all! (Ok, it's super late and apparently I'm starting to sound like Britney Spears. Sorry about that. Wait, I just looked at the clock and it's only 10:21 so it's not late... but the switchback from daylight savings time just happened last night so REALLY it's 11:21. But standard time I guess is the REAL real time, so... I guess I'm just old.)

I wanted to say that if you hadn't noticed the blaring changes I finally updated my blog template! Hope you enjoy it.

I'm probably not done fiddling with it; I'll hopefully start a Facebook group and a Twitter account to get the word out a little more... Although, I'm not sure because I have this theory that people who Tweet are self-important ego-maniacs. But I already fit that category since I share the contents of my so-called "interesting" life wtih the masses. Might as well be as egotistical as possible, right!