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12.31.08 Issue #356 Forward This Newsletter To A Colleague

Angie Stone RDH, BS
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Time To Shine In 2009

With the New Year here thoughts undoubtedly turn to New Year’s resolutions.  What are you going to do differently this year than you did last year?  Are you going to work out more and eat healthier so you can lose weight?  Are you going to attempt to quit smoking? Maybe you will decide to try to be more patient with people.  Whatever is decided for a resolution, most of the promises will be made on a personal level.  While this is important, it is just as essential to make a professional resolution. 

The goal of a resolution is to improve over the next 12 months so at the end of 2009 your life is in a better place than it was at the end of 2008. What are some professional pledges that can be made? The first issue to be decided upon is what areas are lacking.  There may be many areas that could stand to be improved upon.  Some of these include, but are not limited to:

  • Improve the Hygiene department overall production numbers
  • Improve the Hygiene department’s periodontal production
  • Incorporate new technology/products into the hygiene department (including but not limited to):
    • Computerized periodontal charting
    • Oral cancer screening tools
    • Fluoride varnish treatments
    • Decay detection devices
    • Digital X-ray
    • Xylitol Products
    • Anti-decay products
    • Powered toothbrushes
    • Anesthetic choices
    • Piezo Scalers
    • Non-sharpening instruments
  • Increase treatment acceptance
  • Increase patient education
  • Improve marketing
  • Deliver more efficient scaling/root planing
  • Provide a more comfortable, enjoyable hygiene experience
  • Decrease appointment openings
  • Increase retention rate
  • Operate with the correct amount of hygiene days/hygienists

While these are some common areas that hygiene departments need assistance with, every practice has its own special needs. 

Oftentimes when people make personal resolutions they need to seek assistance from an outside source. How many weight loss centers are available to assist with weight issues?  Look in the yellow pages to find work out facilities. There are an abundance of them.  These services help the client assess where they are, how they got there, develop a plan to improve and most important of all assist the client in reaching the goals of the plan.

While facilities exist for these services, what aid can dental professionals seek to assist with their issues?  Consulting services have been developed for this very reason.  The Hygiene Practice Enrichment Program, available through McKenzie Management, has been specifically designed to address issues within the hygiene department.  It is apparent hygienists have been well trained in their formal education to perform hygiene services.  With time, hygienists improve their clinical skills through treating patients on a daily basis. They are not however, trained on how to assess strengths and weaknesses that exist in the clinical practice. Typically, the dentist has not been trained to assess the hygienist’s strengths or weaknesses either. Offices need assistance in assessing of the current state of their hygiene operations, determining what inefficiencies exist with current systems/skills which led to the current situation and most importantly, development and implementation of a plan to rid the department of these problems.

McKenzie Management hygiene consultants have been extensively trained to be able to thoroughly assess the strengths and weakness of hygiene operations. Their knowledge base is broad and includes practical hands-on hygiene experience,  academia as published authors, national speakers and are recognized as experts in their field. 

 Exploration, education, recommendations and implementation are the goals at hand.  “Light bulb” moments abound, minds are opened, ideas are shared, and plans are developed and executed. Results are measurable and positive. Lives of team members and patients are changed for the better. 

If you feel that, “2009 is Your Time to Shine” make a professional resolution this year.   Begin this process by contacting McKenzie Managements Director of Hygiene.  You are sure to be successful at making your resolution a reality!

Need help with implementing new systems in your hygiene department to ensure stellar performance? Email

Interested in having Angie speak to your study group or at your next seminar? Click here.

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