Wednesday, September 30, 2009

SoOoO MaNy InStRuMeNtS

Today we familiarized ourselves with ALL of our instruments.  This included a ton of different scalers.  It was cool to be able to learn about the scalers & where they are used in the mouth, etc.  I cant believe we are going to get to use them so soon!  Scary.  I am excited but nervous.  I am hoping I will be getting a pair of loupes for my birthday, which will really help with seeing clearer.  On a different note, it snowed/hailed today during clinic! The first "snow" of the season, how exciting! :)  I was also able to pass off 3 PE's today - my intraoral (so glad that ones out of the way) and my probing/explorer PE.  It feels good to be ahead  in clinic. 

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Today we learned all about how to correctly use an explorer and WHY we should use an explorer.  I found this to be much easier then probing!  It was cool to be able to feel calculus subgingivally with the explorer tip.  Exploring is very useful for finding calculus so you know which areas to focus on.  Clinic is going by faster and faster every time and I honestly cant believe that we will be cleaning a real patients mouth by the end of THIS semester!  I sure hope I can remember fulcrum, probing, exploring, positions, mirror positions, etc!!  Its all very stressful.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


Today was the funnest day so far!  We got to practice probing on our pod partners...and I'm so thankful for how patient Linda is!  I am having an extremely hard time understanding the different angles and how to get into the "col" area...but I'm sure it will come with time...right?  Or maybe I will need to tell the dentist I work for that I dont probe...JUST KIDDING!  After the hour passed I had kind of gotten the hang of things but its a little stressful when you want to be perfect at it.  Hygiene is very involved, its just not scraping teeth.  I'm happy to be doing hands on though, it helps me learn better.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Week 5

Grrr! Fulcruming is so hard!  Nothing seems to feel natural to me.  I have to think and think about where to put my fingers to support the instrument.  I'm sure next year I will be looking back and thinking how silly I was for stressing over this, but its coming very slow!  I understand the importance of it which is why I'm getting frustrated.  I have to be able to have a secure instrument so I dont cut/or stab my patient...thank goodness for pod partners to practice on :) 

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Today I learned all about holding a proper fulcrum. It was awkward at first because I am not used to being the "primary" provider for the patient, but its really important to make sure you hold the instrument/mirror properly and have the patient face you properly. I learned about making the mirror work for ME :) I'm not used to looking through a mirror to illuminate what I'm trying to see. Overall, I thought it was a very productive day and I learned a lot.

Vital Vitals

I learned how to take vitals today. It was a little difficult because I have never done it before. It was fun once I got the hang of it. We practiced on everyone in our pod and learned the normal and abnormal ranges for BP and pulse & breathing. Its important to do it for every patient because they usually see their hygienist more than their regular doctor. Its possible we could catch someone with high blood pressure without them even knowing its a problem.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


Today in clinic we learned all about taking health histories and why they are so important. I learned how to properly write the health histories into the chart and how to look up the medications that the patient is taking and see how they might affect them orally. I understand the importance of making sure the health histories are accurate.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

TIME to blog :)

Today in clinic we learned how to properly sit and position yourself and the patient. We learned about the invisible "clock" that is around our chair. We use the 8:00 position and 12:00 position to clean anteriors, both facial and lingual. We use the 9:00 position (which is meant for a man not a woman...and if you know what the 9:00 position is you know what I mean) to clean the bucal and lingual surfaces and then the 10:00 and 11:00 position also cleans the lingual, bucal surfaces. We also learned about proper posture, which is going to be important for me to do correctly because I already have neck problems! I also learned the importance of HHX for patients. I hope I remember everything I am supposed to do when I actually start seeing patients because there is a lot of writing to do. Overall, very education and good clinic day!