While there are many things about me that are far from perfect, one thing I’ve always been able to depend on is my eyesight. In hygiene school, I remember reps visiting our class and letting us test-drive magnification loupes, but as a full-time student with no income and two young children at home, it just wasn’t something I could comfortably afford. As the years passed, I told myself that if I was able to practice for as long as I already had with my natural eyesight, there was no sense in getting loupes this late in the game. When I began to notice some right shoulder pain from reaching up to adjust my overhead light multiple times each working day, I thought if anything, I might like to invest in a headlight.
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This past July, while attending RDH Under One Roof, I stopped by the Orascoptic booth. I held various frames and started to wonder if I might appreciate finally owning a pair. After asking several questions and trying on different models, I decided to take the plunge! Jake took my measurements and helped me decide on the frames that would work best for me. As I mentioned, a headlight was something I knew I wanted, so he helped me choose one that suited my preferences.
I chose the RDH EliteEdge frames and have enjoyed the many benefits. I was a little nervous that I’d have difficulty transitioning my brain to see 2.5x closer while treating my patients, but I was pleasantly surprised at how effortless the adjustment was. From the moment I looked down at my first patient’s teeth, I realized how hard I had made my hygiene career over the past nine years. There’s a whole new level of clarity and precision I’d been missing out on, and I became excited for what I would be able to see with the rest of my scheduled patients. I’m happy with how lightweight my loupes feel—I tend to forget I’m wearing them. Some of my favorite features about the RDH EliteEdge frames are the flexible temple arms that allow me to wear them for hours with ease, and the ComforTilt technology—adjustable telescopes that enable me to modify my declination angle. The nose pads are soft, flexible, and easy to adapt for my comfort.
The Endeavour Headlight has been the perfect companion to my new loupes. I chose a corded light option to minimize weight on my frames, and at a mere 0.38 ounces, I can’t even tell it’s there. The lamp utilizes LED illumination, which provides three levels of ultrafocused light that stays cool to the touch, even after hours of use. I’m able to adjust the light intensity with a simple tap to the battery pack through my lab jacket pocket, allowing me to keep my gloved hands away from my system at all times. The rechargeable lithium-ion battery lasts up to 18 hours, although I’ve never had to use it for more than 8 or 9 without charging overnight.
I can’t tell you how much my dental hygiene practice has improved since investing in my loupes and headlight! Seeing my treatment area more clearly has dramatically improved my posture and eliminated the need to repeatedly reach up and adjust my overhead light. Many of my occupational aches and pains have either significantly reduced or vanished; that alone has been an immeasurable return on investment. I thought my eyesight was pretty good in the past, but Orascoptic showed me that there’s a whole new level of quality clinical care, career fulfillment, and ergonomic comfort when you’re able to zoom in!
Editor's note: This article appeared in the March 2022 print edition of RDH magazine. Dental hygienists in North America are eligible for a complimentary print subscription. Sign up here.