Latest Posts

Patient consent and dental anxiety

In February 2017, the Journal of Dental Hygiene published results of a study that found 19% of the sampled population had moderate to high dental anxiety. Dental practitioners are well aware of the clinical challenges posed by patient anxiety. But one situation in which its influence may be overlooked is during the informed consent process. Informed consent is an essential component of the treatment sequence as well as an ethical obligation of every practicing dentist. It rests on the ability of the professional to communicate effectively with the patient and on the capacity of the patient to understand and synthesize the relevant information. The ultimate goal is to allow the patient to arrive at an autonomous decision.

A review of popular dental podcasts

Whether you are at the gym or even spending a late night in lab, podcasts can be interesting and thought provoking entertainment. There are multiple podcasts that are available for entertainment, but many can be a learning tool. After my first year in dental school, I learned about the world of podcasts.

The Council on Professional Issues presents the National Outreach Initiative

The Council on Professional Issues is excited to announce the start of the National Outreach Initiative. Outreach is a crucial component to many chapters within ASDA. Because of its importance, the Council on Professional Issues would like to bring attention towards community service. Outreach promotion has become a goal for ASDA and we will be promoting awareness for underserved populations. Promotion will occur through publications, blog posts and chapter spotlights. The goal is to educate students on these at-risk communities. The National Outreach Initiative will also include Service Week, featuring social media takeovers displaying successful outreach events.

Discussing treatment plans with patients

The radiographs have been taken, probing depths measured and it is time to present the plan to your patient. Behind the scenes, you have studied the patient’s case and know the ideal treatment. You’ve gotten faculty input and you are ready to discuss options with the patient. After presenting your ideas, the patient disagrees with your proposed plan and seems noticeably aggravated. How do you communicate effectively to help the patient understand the risks and benefits of treatment?

The associateship: Preparing for the next step in your career

As a new dentist, you will have many professional options after graduating from dental school. One of these options is joining an existing office as an associate dentist. Although it may seem like an ideal route for you, it may face some challenges if the future associate and the practice owner do not discuss — and put in writing — important hiring agreements such as compensation, benefits, laboratory expenses, supplies and future purchase terms.

The importance of timely annual income certification for students loans

Perhaps you are a dental school graduate with large sums of debt and you find yourself with no choice but to enroll in an income-based repayment program for your federal student loans. In many cases this could cause your payment to drop from around $5,000 a month to under $1,000. The difference in your payment typically causes unpaid interest to accumulate separate from your outstanding principal (the amount you originally borrowed).

Your annual interest is based on your outstanding principal. So if you borrowed $450,000 of student loans and your interest rate is 6.5%, your annual interest is $29,250. If five years has gone by and you accumulated $100,000 in outstanding interest, you are still only being charged based on your original principal amount.

The Wikipedia collaboration of dental schools

Over a year ago, the Wikipedia Editing Project was launched by Dundee Dental School, situated in Scotland, United Kingdom (UK). This student-led project is aimed at improving dental content on Wikipedia. Students were first made aware of the deficiency and inaccuracy of dental articles on the website by the Cochrane Collaboration. This did not come as a surprise to most students. They knew Wikipedia was not the most helpful when looking up course material.