Earlier this month Forbes.com published an article called Why Thousands of Men Like JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon Are Getting Throat Cancer by Matthew Herper. It is an interesting piece that discusses the rise of oral cancers, particularly in men in the prime of their lives. While we don’t know the cause of Mr. Dimon’s cancer, the author notes “it’s very possible that Dimon has been swept up, along with thousands of other men, by an increasingly common disease: throat cancer caused by infection with the human papilloma virus, or HPV.”
The article goes on to discuss various statistics showing the rise of HPV-caused cancer and the mostly men who are diagnosed with it. As Herper states “The point is that these are men much like Dimon: CEOs and consultants, men at the peak of their lives and professional power. And their numbers are increasing.” However, it’s not all bad news! “The good news is that throat cancer caused by HPV is far less deadly than the old type that resulted from chronic tobacco use and drinking.”
That is good news, and even better, you can help fight the battle against oral cancer of any kind in your patients with early detection!
We are pleased to announce the appointment of Kevin Curran to territory sales manager.
In his new position, Curran will be responsible for fostering existing professional relationships while identifying new prospects to increase all StarDental®, DentalEZ®, RAMVAC® and CustomAir® product and equipment sales. His sales territory spans throughout several northern regions including western New York, western Pennsylvania, northeast Ohio and West Virginia (with the exception of the city of Huntington.) He will report directly to Mark Frankenfield, northern regional manager for DentalEZ Group.
Curran brings over 15 years of professional dental sales experience to his new position. Prior to joining DentalEZ Group, he held a variety of positions within Patterson Dental Companies including project manager, service manager and equipment specialist. He also is Owner and Manager of Matco Tools, located in Greensburg, Pennsylvania.
Curran can be reached directly via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To continue our ergonomics theme for July, I’m highlighting an article from DentistryIQ.com titled, “Where do you stand with your dental ergonomics?”by Stacey Simmons, DDS. Simmons begins the article by sharing a personal experience that demonstrates how proper form can have a severe impact on physical well-being, both long and short term. The author then continues to explain how the lack of proper posture can lead to musculoskeletal disorders, which are very common with dentists.
In addition to using proper posture, Simmons recommends physical therapy for those already suffering from pain. As preventive measures, she suggests proper diet and nutrition, and exercise. “Engage in exercise, both muscle and cardiovascular. Muscle toning and strengthening of the head/neck and back muscles are especially beneficial,” states Simmons.
In the office, Simmons recommends using proper posture with ergonomic dental equipment. At DentalEZ, we design our equipment to make your office more ergonomic so you can see well, sit well and work well without the pain!
As summer really heats up we have a few seminars featuring a hot topic in dentistry – oral cancer screening!
- July 25th Oral Cancer Screening Seminar with Dr. Tucker at Henry Schein Dental, Elmhurst, IL
- August 1st Oral Cancer Screening Seminar with Dr. Abbott at Studio Movie Grill City, Houston TX
- August 29th Oral Cancer Screening Seminar with Dr. Tucker at OKC Center, Oklahoma City, OK
In addition, we’ll also be attending the RDH Under One Roof meeting from August 14-16th in Chicago, IL. How about you, do you have any exciting events planned this summer?
by Guest Blogger Patti DiGangi, RDH, BS
The popularity of the television show Mad Men raised awareness of 1960s themes of sex, drinking and smoking. Women were marketed in the 1960s with their own cigarette brand with the catch-phrase “You’ve come a long way, baby.” Sit-down dentistry also evolved in the 1960s. Is “You’ve come a long way, baby” accurate with dentistry ergonomics? We have come a long way, but maybe not far enough. Many clinicians have been forced into early retirement because of Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSD) or they continue to try to work through them. Newer research shows sit-down dentistry may not be as healthy for clinicians as once thought. Shaking up the routine might be better for our bodies.
Generations and Variety
The baby boomers are fighting growing older and are moving into a new phase of practice valuing and selling. While Generation X feels poorer, ignored and retirement seems so far off as to almost not be in the picture at all (The Wall Street Journal http://online.wsj.com/public/resources/documents/SUN_-A003.pdf). They are just starting to feel some aches and pains as their bodies begin to break down. The Millennial Generation is still feeling the invincibility of youth and has an opportunity to prevent injuries before they start. Every generation can improve their ergonomics and evaluate what they were taught. It’s time to look at our equipment through new eyes.
Dental education has touted four-handed dentistry as best since Mad Men days of the 1960s. Yet most dental schools, then and now do not have enough assistants trained in four-handed dentistry for students to truly learn the skills. For most of us, we learned it on the job. And besides, our mothers taught us to sit up straight.
Our bodies are made for movement. Recent research shows staying in one position, sitting or standing, for an extended period of time can lead to injuries. Sitting has joined the list of risk factors that can lead to chronic disease, cardiovascular problems, cancer, obesity and premature death. Even with numerous articles and CE courses about ergonomics, MSDs continue to escalate. Maybe our mothers and dental schools weren’t completely right.
Sitting down is not a criterion for four-handed dentistry. (See Box 1) Variety is said to be the spice of life and is true for practicing dentistry much more than previously believed. It is the combination of sitting and standing that can be most beneficial to our bodies. For those that don’t have assistants, as is often the case for dental hygienists, one easy way to gain variety is to sit for the maxilla and stand for mandible. This helps to keep the practitioners moving, yet to be practical, the patient chair needs to accommodate numerous changes.
Ergonomically Designed Patient Chairs
Our patient chair should allow us to get as close as possible to the patient in the proper working environment whether sitting or standing. This makes the purchase of the patient chair one of the most important decisions in a dental practice. Well, not quite, the most important thing in the room is the dental team member, not the equipment. Ergonomics is the science of adjusting the work environment to the worker.
Most dental care providers and team members are care-giving people-oriented personalities. We will tend to care for others before we care for ourselves. Our choice in patient chairs has been more about patient comfort and/or our decorating and design. Manufacturers created cushy, soft chairs comfortable for the patients, but not so great for the practitioners.
Patient chairs today need technology to meet the demands of this current and future market. The patient chair meeting today’s and tomorrow’s needs will make our practices more marketable. A newer, often smaller (due to the increasing number of women) practitioner won’t be interested in purchasing a 15-30 year old chair. The NuSimplicity™ Chair from DentalEZ® meets the needs of this new market. This chair goes lower than any other chair to as low as 15”, yet as high as 35.5” to allow for both sit-down and stand-up dentistry. The thin, tapered back that is a slim 12 3/4” width at the top of the chair back allows the professional’s arms to stay in a proper position sitting or standing.
Professionals spend the most time adjusting the chair the first time we lean the patient back. When we sit them up to take x-rays, for a hygiene check or to accommodate standing, a lot of time can be lost readjusting the chair. Yet what happens more often is we don’t readjust, we bend, stretch, raise our arms and accommodate often hurting ourselves in the process. What makes this chair most flexible to support movement of our bodies are the simple chair controls include auto return, last position, 3 presets and manual settings.
Mad Men vs. Today
The idea of personal healthfulness was basically non-existent in the 1960s world of Mad Men. Everyone drinks, no one exercises, and even characters who suffer from various medical maladies can’t make the connection between their behaviors and outcomes. Today, we know more. Our little everyday choices affect our long-term future and wellness, and ability to sell our practices. Shaking up our routines truly makes a difference.
Box 1: Basic criteria for true four-handed dentistry: Four-Handed Dentistry, Part 1: An Overview Concept
- Equipment must be ergonomically designed
- The team and patient are seated comfortably
- Motion economy is practiced
- Preset cassettes or trays are used
- The dentists allows/assigns all legally delegable duties to the assistant
- Treatment is planned in advance in a logical sequence
Patti DiGangi, RDH, BS is a speaker and co-authored DentalCodeology: Jump Start Diagnostic Coding (www.DentalCodeology.com) released April 1, 2014 with Christine Taxin. It is the second in the series DentalCodeology easy-to-read bite-size books for busy people to help prepare for the transition to electronic health records profitably. Patti holds a publishing license with the American Dental Association for Current Dental Terminology©2014 and is an American Dental Association Evidence Based Champion. She can be reached at email@example.com.
We are pleased to report that our 430 High-Speed Handpieces are featured in Dentistry Today’s Top 100 Products of 2014. Our StarDental 430 Series of High-Speed Handpieces are a mainstay in the industry and we continue to expand the line. From the original 430 SWL LubeFree Fiber Optic High-Speed Handpiece to our reintroduction of the 430 Flex models, our handpieces stand the test of time and save you money!
Most dental offices see treatment recommendations ignored by patients from time to time, but it’s a whole different story when parents ignore repeated recommendations for their child’s dental care that could lead to more serious problems, such as infections. This article from the Morning Call tells the story of Lehigh Township, PA parents who “face criminal charges after they repeatedly neglected to get dental care for their daughter’s 14 abscessed teeth that caused an infection so severe a dentist feared it could kill her, court records state.” What a horrible situation! We’re glad to see the dentist involved took charge and brought this case to the court’s attention before the child’s life was harmed.
On Tuesday, July 15th we are excited to take part in an oral cancer seminar with Dennis Abbott, DDS. The presentation will provide participants with a comprehensive and well-structured experience that covers four main topics:
• The target population
• The complete examination and accurate records
• New detection tools
• Patient discussions: results and referral protocols
Present from DentalEZ® will be Territory Sales Manager, Bill McKeon, who will be on hand to demonstrate the Identafi® Oral Cancer Screening Device from StarDental®. The course will take place at Henry Schein Canada, 221 Jacob Keffer Parkway, Concord, ON. Reserve your spot today by calling Linda Vespera from Henry Schein Canada at 905-832-9101, ext. 4300.
It is ergonomics month here at DentalEZ® – join us in celebrating ways to improve your health! We have an informative free CE Webinar with esteemed hygienist Patti DiGangi, RDH, BS on Wednesday, July 9th. Sign up here for the webinar, Practice Management – Remain Healthy, Productive and Profitable (Who Comes First: Taking a Longer View). Patti is also our guest blogger of the month, check back for her post “Shaking Up the Routine: It’s Better For Our Bodies” later this month.
We also found two great articles to share with you, both from DentistryIQ.com. We’ll share another in the next few weeks, but the first of these informative articles is called, “The economics of ergonomics: 3 steps to maintain longevity throughout your dental career” by Iman Sadri, DDS. The article focuses on back pain and explains how it evolves through the lack of proper posture and exercise. It continues to describe recommended techniques for exercise to combat poor posture. Sadri concludes that “these three essential steps can help you maintain longevity throughout your entire dental career: maintain proper posture, use magnification, and receive physical therapy.”
To avoid poor posture and prevent back pain, musculoskeletal disorders, etc., we recommend using an operator stool from our ergonomic line of stools, and a patient chair that allow you easy access to the oral cavity without reaching or twisting. We offer three chairs that do this with their thin, tapered backs; including our latest chair, the NuSimplicity™, which brings us to the best part of our ergonomics celebration – a free chair! Visit our Facebook page for your chance to win one in our #MyNuSimplicity Sweepstakes.
Bring out the grill, bathing suits and sparklers – it’s time for picnics, fun in the sun and fireworks. Here in the U.S., we are excited to celebrate the independence of our nation every year, but especially when it falls on a Friday! We can all use a long weekend to spend time with friends and family. Here’s to hoping everyone enjoys theirs. Happy 4th of July to all!