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Tips From A Dental Hygienist
Dental hygienists are an indispensible and valuable part of any clinic’s team. From communicating treatment plans to explaining diagnoses, hygienists establish important relationships with patients to ensure a positive experience and good oral health. Patterson Today spoke with three hygienists who shared incredible insights, advice and experiences gained during their daily activities.


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Sarah Blood, RDH, is a dentalhygienist for Dr. Peter Eliopoulos’ team in Chelmsford, Mass. Blood graduated from the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Forsyth School of Dental Hygiene.

Sarah Blood, RDH
One month after graduating from West Los Angeles College, Stephanie Tajon, RDH, began as a hygienist at Dr. Sandra Calleros’ practice in El Segundo, Calif. Prior to the dental hygiene field, she earned her bachelor’s degree in kinesiology at San Diego State University and worked in the fitness industry.
Ashlyn Jones, RDH, has been with Dr. Todd Howell’s practice since the practice moved from Enterprise, Ala., to its new location in Birmingham. Jones studied elementary education at the University of Alabama and received a dental hygiene degree from the Alabama Dental Hygiene Program.
PT: What inspires you in your profession?
Sarah Blood: I am always seeking innovative, more advanced ways to care for my patients, offering them the best treatment possible. I find myself constantly reviewing new studies, products, equipment and techniques to keep me current in my field and abreast of new advancements and changes. My thirst for knowledge and patient care is what inspires me most.
Ashlyn Jones: Seeing that I have made a difference in a patient’s life, not by just cleaning their teeth, inspires me. By getting to know my patients on a more personal level, I’m able to make better recommendations for the health of their teeth. I do my best to put anyone who walks into our office at emotional ease.
PT: What type of support or services do you provide the doctor in your practice?
Stephanie Tajon: I have become the doctor’s second set of eyes and ears in finding treatment or hearing their concerns. I act as the liaison between the doctor and the patients as well as treatment/appointment coordinators to communicate valuable information.
PT: What service or tool from Patterson plays the largest role in enhancing the way you practice dentistry?
Ashlyn Jones: Without a doubt the intraoral camera is the most effective device I use. With this technology, I am able to show the patient exactly what needs to be cleaned or fixed. For example, when a patient has a whole bar of calculus built up, I want them to be able to see the problem area and know how to correct it and to understand when I am cleaning it that I’m not chipping away tooth; the hard material is calculus. I can show them before and after pictures, which help a lot with educating patients.
PT: Offer some key tips on how other hygienists can add value to their teams.
Stephanie Tajon: Having a system in place starting from pre-treatment to post-treatment enables you to remember important details. Spending the time to get to know your patients allows the opportunity to fully understand their feelings and concerns.
Ashlyn Jones, RDH