Latest Posts

Breaking the culture of dental disease

smileA smile matters a lot, perhaps more than you think. In a recent TEDx talk, Dr. Steven Lin, reports that “smiling has been shown to decrease blood pressure, boost your immune system, and release mood-lifting endorphins.” Thus, when someone is unable to smile, due to either dental disease or tooth loss, their self-esteem and overall well-being are negatively affected. Why then does society often separate oral health from general health? After all, the mouth is the gateway to the rest of the body. Dr. Lin proposes that by changing the way we think and talk about oral health, we can break society’s culture of dental disease.

Dental student receives award to do research at NIH/NIDCR

Screen Shot 2014-11-26 at 1.04.04 PM Like many dental students, I studied biology in college and did research and worked in a lab. Once dental school starts though, getting involved in an entirely new arena of research can be daunting and can stop students from doing it. Despite that, I still wanted to be involved. I believe that research is the foundation of all disciplines. Our field has been able to advance thanks to new innovations inspired by dentists, and dental scientists who dared to ask questions and pursued the answers. I wanted to be apart of that.

Occlusal topography made simple with a stamp

IMG_1622Dentistry has high standards of quality and efficiency. Being efficient and effective is important to having a successful and we’ll run business. The way we fill preps is determined by scientific evidence that says how much material to add, where, when and how- all concerned with providing the strongest yet most flexible and long lasting composite filling. Many schools of thought teach the layering method. Adding composite in increments, one side and the other. They teach their students to study and memorize occlusal anatomy- the cusps, slopes, margins, grooves, pits and ridges. However, other theories on filling composite preps require less finicking with your plastic instrument, and possibly more accurate topography.

Personal finance in the digital age

Screen Shot 2014-11-21 at 4.52.29 PMWatch the video in this post from Ryan Schulte, a partner in financial advising from Envision Wealth Group. Ryan has been working with dental students and dentists for many years. He says one of the biggest things people are noticing across the country is the mess being made from lack of personal financing. Budgeting is important! The digital age makes it too convenient to venmo your friends, set “auto-reload” to your Starbucks account app, or buy pretty much anything by synching your credit card with the Target app. On average, people are only saving 3-4% of their income. We should be aiming for around 15-20% in savings. Shocking, but with hard work and dedication, you’ll be happy you did!

What do you do when a patient is more focused on their chart than on you?

snooping-patientI recall an encounter I had with a new patient of mine. She was a middle-aged woman who has not seen a dentist in a very long time. The visit started with a “Welcome to UCSF” message, a brief overview of the clinic operations, and the goal for today’s appointment. At UCSF, we are taught to sit face-to-face when using the computer instead of behind the patient to allow adequate eye contact. It also allows for a more collaborative platform when discussing treatment plan options. I apologized to the patient in advance if there are times when I am focused on editing my note or navigating my way through Axium. But this patient wanted more than just a discussion. Keep reading to find out what happened and weigh in on how you would have handled it…