Message in a Bottle Mailbag: Long-term use of loupes, scheduling front office training, GNYDM
Joshua Austin, DDS, FAGD, responds to a question about the long-term use of loupes, shares his tips for fitting front office training into the schedule, and explains what he and Dental Economics Editor Chris Salierno, DDS, were doing at the Greater New York Dental Meeting (GNYDM).
The Message in a Bottle Mailbag is a monthly feature of the e-newsletter, Pearls for Your Practice: The Product Navigator. Each month, Editorial Director Joshua Austin, DDS, FAGD, answers reader-submitted questions to help you navigate your dental product decisions (and more!). This month, he responds to a question about the long-term use of loupes, shares his tips for fitting front office training into the schedule, and explains what he and Dental Economics Editor Chris Salierno, DDS, were doing at the Greater New York Dental Meeting (GNYDM).
Lisa from California wrote: What is the latest research on the long-term use of loupes by dental hygienists and dentists? I have concerns of potential changes in eyesight.
This is an excellent question, Lisa. To be honest with you, I do not keep up with the ophthalmologic literature. Knowing that this was outside of my realm of expertise, I texted my friend and optometrist Sandra Fortenberry, OD, FAOO. When I posed this question to her, she said there shouldn’t be much in the way of long-term effects, providing that the loupes are set and adjusted appropriately. If they are not set correctly, you could experience asthenopia, or eye strain.
As someone with a loupes addiction, I can tell you that I know immediately if I've put on a pair that isn’t set correctly. I don’t think I could work in them for more than a few minutes. Most adults will need reading glasses at some point, regardless of profession. Even if there were long-term consequences to using loupes, I do not think I could give them up—I would deal with glasses in my old age in order to see my margins today and throughout my career. Maybe that's not the "right" way to think about it, but that's my honest opinion. I need magnification and external light to practice effectively.
John from San Dimas, California, asked: I think Front Office Rocks is a great idea, but how does your staff have time to watch all of those [videos]?
Good question, John. I would recommend watching the Front Office Rocks videos the same way you would "eat an elephant," one bite at a time. Give your staff a goal of watching one video a day. That's less than 10 minutes of their time. I guarantee most of them spend 15 minutes of the day on Instagram liking cat photos. They can carve out time for this. Don’t expect them to finish all of the videos in a couple of days. I have yet to hear of “Front Office Rocks and chill.” There isn't any binge watching here. By watching one (or maybe even two) a day, they can finish them all over a couple of months.
Nicole from Rochester wrote: I saw you and Chris Salierno in the exhibit hall at the Greater New York Dental Meeting. I didn’t talk to you because there were cameras on you two. What was going on with that?
Nicole, you should have said hello! We love meeting readers and making friends. We were shooting a video for a big dental company that I am sure will be out sometime soon. Chris was amazing to shoot with. We had a blast. Say hello next time!
Editor's note: Do you have a question for Dr. Austin? Is there a product you'd like to see him review? Or would you like to submit your own Pearl? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. You might just see it in the e-newsletter, Pearls for Your Practice: The Product Navigator! If you're not a Product Navigator subscriber, click here to sign up.
December 2016 | Intaglio crown prep for zirconia, dental repair companies, Packers and Cowboys
November 2016 | Composite systems with Vita 3D-Master shades, anesthetic buffering, baseball wounds
October 2016 | Gutta percha removal and the single-cone technique, loupes, Super Bowl predictions
Joshua Austin, DDS, FAGD, is an editorial director for Pearls for Your Practice: The Product Navigator, an e-newsletter from DentistryIQ and Dental Economics. He also writes the Pearls for Your Practice column in Dental Economics. After graduating from the University of Texas Health Science Center Dental School, Dr. Austin associated for several years. In October 2009, he opened a solo general practice in a suburban area of San Antonio, Texas. Dr. Austin is involved in all levels of organized dentistry and can be reached at email@example.com.