August 2021 Social Commentary
Like Dimensions of Dental Hygiene’s Facebook page to share your thoughts on posted questions.
DO YOU ALWAYS WEAR LOUPES WHEN TREATING PATIENTS?
Brean Jahn, RDH Dimensions Facebook Commenter
Always with every patient. I’ve worn my loupes since dental hygiene school, and it would feel bizarre to work without them.
Cassandra Thompson, RDH, BS Dimensions Facebook Commenter @cassandrardh
I graduated in 2002. A loupes manufacturer visited our school and offered a discount price to students, but they were still approximately $400. I was married with two children and not working. I could not justify spending that kind of money at the time. I graduated and worked without loupes for about 6 years. When my dentist invited a loupes manufacturer to our office, I decided to take the plunge. I added a light about 6 years or 7 years later. I can honestly say I would absolutely not practice without my loupes or my LED light. I felt confident in my ability prior to having them, but with the loupes and light I can see so much better for prophy and diagnosis of any possible treatment needed. The hygiene program I attended started requiring them the year after I graduated. I wish it had been that way when I started.
The only time I don’t wear loupes is when I take X-rays!
Yes, to save my back, neck, and shoulders, but also to give my patients the best experience!
Yes, you can see everything. Don’t let a patient who looks “easy” deceive you. It is easy to miss something and loupes help reduce this risk as well as improve your ergonomics by preventing the need to lean into the patient.
I am curious about all of the dental hygienists using them and when they attended school. We were never even shown them back in the Stone Age when I went to school! Therefore, I’ve never been able to use them. I guess you can’t teach old dogs new tricks.
I have been a dental hygienist for 32 years. I started wearing loupes 2 years ago and could not work with out them now. I keep them on for every patient. I have found I prefer my regular glasses over my loupes for administering anesthesia.
I have only started wearing loupes with a light in the past year. I’ve been practicing for more than 15 years and they’ve greatly improved my field of vision and posture.
The only time I haven’t worn them is when the arm broke. I taped it together until a new arm arrived because I never want to go a day without them. Not only do I not have to strain my eyes because I can see so much more, but the patient is receiving better treatment. Also, I can’t stress how much I love the loupes and light combination. I’m so glad I got both in school.
I do not wear my loupes 100% of the time, but I do for a good percentage of my patients. I find I need to take a break from them occasionally. I’ve been practicing hygiene for many years, and I have noticed I get ocular migraines while wearing loupes sometimes. I have found a happy balance of wearing them and regular safety glasses.
I have been a dental hygienist for 37 years, and have never used loupes. I wasn’t trained with them, and have never felt the need. I do use a magnifying mirror and have prescription glasses. I’m still very confident in my work!
I just started wearing loupes in the past 2 weeks and I’ve been a hygienist for a long time! I have found they greatly improve my posture, and my body doesn’t hurt as much at the end of the day; not to mention, my ability to see things much clearer. I won’t go back to just glasses.
100% of the time. I don’t know why I waited so long. I would be lost without them and my light. I had to get a new battery pack and I had to use the overhead light for a week. I apologized to the dentist if I missed anything.
I have been a dental hygienist for 7 years and I had never owned a pair of loupes until this year. I was in desperate need of something to improve my posture and was simply curious as to what loupes were all about. It took me a couple days to adjust to the change, but once I did, I could never go back! Not only do the loupes support my posture, they have helped me in pointing the dentist toward certain areas that I previously would not have noticed. Since I have been wearing loupes, I’ve been told “good catch” numerous times during the dentist’s exam. I believe wearing loupes has led to better all over treatment of my patients. I don’t always wear them with my pediatric patients, but other than that, I’m wearing my loupes!
Ashley Roberts, RDH Dimensions Facebook Commenter
We weren’t allowed to wear them in school. We were taught to develop our craft without them. I have 20/20 vision and my eye doctor told me to absolutely not wear them or I’d need corrective lenses within a matter of months.
I love my loupes and headlamp. I wear them every day for every single patient I see. If I don’t, I notice I miss plaque and calculus. I want to be able treat my patients to the best of my ability and my loupes help me do that!
Yes! Wearing loupes is a game changer on catching little bits of calculus or broken restorations. The light is something I also can’t live without.
From Dimensions of Dental Hygiene. August 2021;19(8):12-13.