You’re a dental hygienist, and I’m an editor. Several reasons may prompt me to really like an article, and you may have entirely different reasons for being impacted by an article in RDH magazine. I have devoted this space in years past to discuss what I think were the best articles written during a calendar year. For example, I think the article on teledentistry by Anne Guignon and Cindy Purdy on page 18 would merit consideration as one of the best articles in 2017. I write this Editor’s Note, though, before the magazine has even departed for the printer.
Due to digital technology, we can determine what readers liked (and not just what my eyes enjoyed). So here are the top five articles from 2017: (due to the same technology, the titles of the articles may be slightly different from what was printed; so use the online titles and author names below to find them at RDHmag.com.)
1. Online title: Another desperate cry: Hygienist spends Saturday night at the ER; don’t let it happen to you. Author: Anne Guignon. I think Anne’s first sentence should speak for itself. “Imagine spending your hard-earned time off from work in an emergency room trying to get relief from the worst neck and shoulder pain possible.” Anne, of course, is our in-house expert on work-related pain.
2. Online title: 10 reasons why we must take dental patients’ blood pressure. Author: Linda Lawson. I’ll give you the 10th reason here. It helps to advance the profession of “tooth cleaners.” A TV show that aired not long before the article was published asserted that dental hygiene is a “fake profession.”
3. Online title: Jenn’s vision: Victim of eye injury turns into advocate for eyewear for dental patients. Author: Noel Kelsch. In 2014, Noel first reported on a young mother (Jenn) who suffered an eye injury during a dental appointment. She talked with the victim again this year, elaborating on how Jenn has turned into an advocate for eyewear for all dental patients. Jenn commented to Noel, “Everything I once knew is now a distant memory ... I will never get my eyesight back, so I make the best of it.”
4. Online title: The doctor’s view: Dentists have some startling stories to share about hygienists too. Author: Eileen Morrissey. RDH magazine, of course, is published for the benefit of dental hygienists. On occasion, a disparaging comment about doctors will appear in the magazine’s pages. Eileen wanted to hear from the other side. So she interviewed doctors about what they think of hygienists. Contradicting the doctor in front of the patient is really, really irksome. Take the disagreement out into the hall.
5. Online title: What it takes to be a laser hygienist: Training options, legal issues should be addressed. Author: Angie Wallace. Angie is one of the few hygienists recognized by the Academy of Laser Dentistry to provide CE on laser usage in the dental setting. With this article, she wanted to address common questions about which hygiene procedures can be treated with a laser, required training, and reimbursement issues.
I hope our upcoming articles for 2018 strike a chord with you as well.