Cleaning teeth. Taking radiographs. Spit. Blood. Gagging. Squirming. Running behind. Ahhhh... the glorious job of being a dental hygienist.
We've all had days we'd rather forget at the office. Sure, sometimes you can get a real good feeling that you're doing something good for your patients. After all, health care is all about helping people. But after a while, you may be searching for some motivation to keep you going. It doesn't take long before "you've seen it all." Some days seem to really drag on. And some patients can really get under your skin.
So what do you do? How do we keep going in a dental hygienist job that has become mundane? There's lot of ways to spice things up, if you look in the right places. Stress management is the key to long term success. For any job. Don't allow yourself to focus on the negative aspects of being a dental hygienist. Always look at the positives! Which there are a ton of things to be happy about:
- You're providing a specialized service to help people's health
- You've earned a degree that people respect
- The job outlook for dental hygienists is good
- Typically, your working in a nice clean environment
- Your hours can be flexible
- Your pay is above average
Remember to keep you head up. Literally. Along with the daily grind of repetition can come body fatigue. And neck and back problems are slow to heal. Good body posture can lead to a longer and healthier career. Stretch out in between patients. Adjust your chair for proper back support. Be sure that the seat is at the proper height, and keep the patient chair at the proper position as well. Instead of moving around to accommodate your patients, have your patients move around to accommodate you. After all, they are only there for an hour, and you'll be there for 30 years!! And you'll appreciate your good posture management in retirement, doing things you love to do without the harness of injury.
So sit back and relax. Being a dental hygienist is sweet. Not much can go wrong, and you'll do pretty well financially, too. So take a breathe before you seat your next patient. And exhale.