When asked about challenges they face, hygienists often report burnout and not having the opportunity to expand. In a video timed for National Dental Hygienist Week, Lynn Atkinson, RDH, shared tips to help hygienists combat these challenges by expanding their knowledge base.
"Education, education, education," said Atkinson, who has practiced for more than 30 years. "I learn something new every day. I have a new challenge or opportunity every single day."
For hygienists, Atkinson emphasized the importance of finding a practice that will recognize and celebrate hygienists' knowledge and skillset. In fact, she drives hours each day because that supportive environment is worth it to her.
"If you have everybody collaborating and the doctor backing you up and letting you be a co-diagnostician, it makes all the difference in the world," she said.
As for dentists and other dental office professionals, Atkinson advised using National Dental Hygienists to acknowledge the hygienists on social media and in front of patients. For instance, managers or dentists can give hygienists a shoutout on social media by touting their unique skills.
See more tips, challenges, and opportunities for hygienists in the video below.
Lynn Atkinson has been a registered dental hygienist for more than 30 years. She graduated from Cypress College with a degree in dental hygiene in 1989 and is proud to have been part of several dental teams that have incorporated state-of-the-art technology. Since her initial training and certification through the World Clinical Laser Institute (WCLI) in dental lasers in 1996, Lynn has been actively applying the use of dental lasers in hygiene daily in her practice in Mission Viejo, CA.