DENTAL HYGIENE SENIORS’ OBSERVATION
Dental hygiene entails keeping the mouth, gums and teeth clean and in a healthy state. This is done by regular brushing and flossing of teeth and also regular checking by a dentist (Wilkins, 2012). This work aims to highlight the professional values that can be emulated by a freshman clinician by studying a senior student as she attended a patient.
The communication process between the senior student and the patient was very formal and very professional. The student’s physical appearance was outstanding; she was well groomed, her hair was neat and wore an attractive smile, I think this helped in setting a good atmosphere for effective communication. I studied the senior student get the patient from the sitting area warmly and spoke to her in a good tone that made her feel at ease. The senior student then sat down with the patient calmly and briefly studied her medical history. All this time, I could observe that the clinical student was patient with the patient; I studied this as a very important virtue to hold on when dealing with one another. All this time, the student would smile at the patient, nod sometimes and show interest in what was being said by the patient. She also encouraged the patient to give more details of her illness by comments like “yes please”, “sure”. When she learnt that the patient did not have a regular physician, she calmly advised her that she ought to have one and helped her with the address of the patient's nearest hospital to use it as her physician. The senior student then started probing the patient. It was evident that she gave responses promptly. I also noted this as a good thing to hold on to. The student then called the instructor and they went through the medical history together.
Examples of verbal skills used by the clinician include good use of tonal variation while asking questions and giving statements. The clinician also asked clear questions. Examples of non-verbal skills were demonstrated in her excellent use of gestures, facial expressions and the eye contact she maintained with the patient. The clinician demonstrated various types of listening skills including; turn taking, focus empathy, non-verbal cues just to mention a few. Examples of listening skills demonstrated by the clinician included; she stopped talking when the patient was doing so and focused on the patient. She was patient, watched the non-verbal cues used by the patient, and she tried to understand the patients point of view.
I was able to study the clinician’s ergonomics. From what I could see, she assumed good working positions and postures. I had time to question her and she told me that she often suffers from musculoskeletal problems if no proper lighting is put in place. This makes her struggle in viewing the oral cavity and often results to visual fatigue. She also cited that lack of proper adjustable equipment could also lead to musculoskeletal problems.I was also able to study the clinician’s …