On Point New Horizons Dental Care
KSAL Staff - May 24, 2016 11:39 am
- Why did you choose to be a in the dental field?
This is actually a really great story that I love to tell people! My whole life I knew I wanted to be in the medical field. I always assumed nursing would be the career for me but when I was a senior in high school my boyfriend, at the time, and I were hanging out and I noticed all the plaque he had between his teeth! I was so shocked that he didn’t floss his teeth I begged him to let me do it for him. It took some bartering but finally he said yes. After I flossed his teeth I was so excited, sounds so weird I know, I went home and told my mom that I had decided what I wanted to do with my life! I wanted floss teeth and if only there was a profession that would let you do that. She looked at me funny and said, “It’s called a dental hygienist, Stephanie.” So here I am still flossing teeth and still loving it!
- What do you think makes New Horizons different from other dental offices?
The way we act as a family. I can honestly say the people I work with are not only my friends inside the office but outside the office as well. One of the things I loved about NHDC when I first observed here was the way everyone helps each other out without hesitation. That shows through to the patients that come through the door every day. The willingness of those around me to help patients accomplish their goals is outstanding.
- How do you handle people who are nervous about going to the dentist?
We have several options for patients who are not a fan of the dental office. Even my own fiancé won’t step foot inside the door without the promise of laughing gas to get him through his appointments! It is a very common occurrence in our profession and I think a lot of time people feel like they are the only one dealing with this but we are here to help you move past those bad experiences and make new, good ones! Our lowest option for sedation is the N2O, or laughing gas, it’s a lower level of sedation because it only works when you are actually using it. The next level is oral sedation where you take medication the night before and the morning of your appointment. With this you have to have someone drive you too and from the appointment because you will be very drowsy or even sleeping the whole time you are in the office. It also makes time go much faster for those longer appointments where there is more restorations to do. One of the oral sedations we did about a year ago said to me, at the end of his appointment, “You’re done already?” and I said, “You’ve been here 3 hours!” He had no idea. Our last form of sedation is where we have a nurse anesthetist come in and actually put you under. You have no idea you are even here.
- Does your office work on children?
Yes! Absolutely, we see a lot of children in our office; everyone is very well trained on how to help with children here in our office.
- How do you make a child less anxious?
With children it’s all about the experience! You have to have fun with them and show them that this is an exciting place to be! The TV in the ceiling doesn’t hurt either, once you turn on their favorite show, you’re their best friend. We like to start kids out with what we call a happy visit. That’s where they come in and take a ride in the chair, maybe let us count their teeth and then they get a new toothbrush and a prize. If they let us do more in that appointment then we do but we just take it one step at a time and see what they are comfortable with.
- What is something you recommend people do more to take care of their teeth to prevent needing expensive dental work?
FLOSS! It is the easiest and cheapest way to keep your teeth and your gums healthy! I know I sound like a broken record to all my patients who don’t floss but it takes about a minute and you can do it while you’re watching TV. Dr. Guest used to ask patients if they wanted $10,000 and when they would say yes he would tell them that at the end of the appointment he would give it to them! When he would get done with his exam he would say, “Are you ready for your $10,000?” Then he would tell them, if you floss every day you will save AT LEAST that much money on fillings, crowns and maybe even having to have teeth pulled. Just spending one minute a day and pennies on flossing can save you big in the long run!