As with any topic or cause, those who have impacted our lives are those we choose to become passionate about. For me, it was my cousin, who at 41 fiercely battled for his life for 5 years, starting at the time of his initial diagnosis.
Ever notice that when we hear something horrific about our dental profession in the news we tend to become defensive about it?
If you said, "No, that's not true...” I invite you to consider this: Stop being defensive!
The recent tragic news involving 7,000 patients who may be exposed to or infected with HIV, Hepatitis A, B, and C should not to be ignored. It's an important story to pay attention to and can be an infection control conversation starter between you and your patients.
Sitting in the "waiting" area for a new tire on my car and writing this blog on infection control seems like a brilliant idea when you’re a germ-a-phobe!
Know the Facts Did you know that close to 80% of infectious diseases are transmitted by touch? Every day, we touch contaminated surfaces; the problem is that after touching surfaces, we unknowingly touch our mouth, eyes, and nose. In regards to cold and flu viruses, the best protection we can actively do for others and ourselves is to wash our hands.
I recently happened to catch an episode of one of the most popular TV shows: The Biggest Loser. This particular episode's challenge engaged the kids to make food choices by selecting which foods had more calories: fats or carbohydrates. Their selections then determined the total pounds the adult contestants had to lose that week.
While learning some healthy habits myself, it occurred to me that this show didn't address the importance or risk factor that oral health has in connection to obesity. With approximately one-third of the US population battling obesity, we must recognize the impact of oral health and arrive at a plan to begin a home care regimen. This should also be followed by the periodontal therapy recommended by that particular practice.
Recently, I practiced clinical hygiene in a periodontal practice, and I worked with a patient who has Type 2 diabetes. I asked her how her mouth had been feeling, what her most recent blood/sugar reading was that day, and whether she knew her latest Hb1Ac score. She looked at me and said, "Is there really a connection with all of that?"
What I discovered that day was that many patients do not yet grasp the direct impact their diabetes control has in correlation to their oral health.