No, The Health Department Did Not Say To Microwave Face Masks To Sterilize Them

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Y’all…please do not microwave your face masks. I guess somewhere on the internet there was a post telling people to do this. No. Do not do this!

There are people that are showing images of their burnt masks because they followed this advice that someone gave on the internet.

Health Departments are speaking up and asking you to not do this.

Fabric/home made masks are to be marked as to which side you will wear as inside to be consistent. These masks are to be…

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You wash your face mask. If you microwave it you will burn it. You could even catch your house on fire!

DO NOT TRY TO STERILIZE FABRIC MASK IN THE MICROWAVE as directed on facebook. This is what happened to mine this morning.This was at 2 minutes in an unsealed Ziploc bag.

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You can wash your face masks in your clothes washing machine. Mine has a sanitizing setting, so that is what I would use. But even if you don’t have that setting you can still do a hot water wash with laundry soap.

People are saying you can sterilize a face mask by placing it in a plastic baggy and microwaving it for 2 to 3 minutes. NO!

Do not put your face mask in the microwave to sanitize it , my house stinks bad ! My favorite mask to . Bummer

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Thankfully, those that tried it are speaking up so that others do not make the same mistake. Masks are hard to get, even if you are making your own, you don’t want to ruin it.

Do Not put cloth face mask in microwave!! This is mine on 1 1/2 minutes!!!!!

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I did a very quick search and came across many posts with the same results. Burnt, ruined face masks.

Don’t microwave the mask

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So do yourself a favor and skip the microwave. Just wash them in the washing machine or you can even hand wash them if needed. Give them a good soak and scrub, rinse and hang them to dry.

This content was originally published here.

Police, health officials rebut Whitmer’s claims about hospital protest problems

Police, health officials rebut Whitmer’s claims about ambulance protest problems

Beth LeBlanc
The Detroit News
Published 10:52 AM EDT Apr 21, 2020

Lansing — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said during a Monday press conference that protesters last week blocked ambulances from reaching Sparrow Hospital, but local law enforcement and hospital officials have countered the claims. 

Whitmer’s assertions stem from a Wednesday protest called Operation Gridlock during which more than 4,000 people — most staying in their cars —  surrounded the Capitol for hours to protest the governor’s extended and tightened stay-home order. 

Police have said the gridlock caused no issues for ambulances, but Whitmer has since maintained otherwise in at least two public press conferences. The Democratic governor has been under pressure from Republican legislative leaders, certain business groups and some residents to carve out exceptions to her tightened stay home order that still follow federal guidance and create a plan for gradually reopening parts of Michigan’s economy.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer gives a COVID-19 update.

“The blocking of cars and ambulances trying to get into Sparrow Hospital immediately endangered lives,” Whitmer said Monday. “…While I respect people’s right to dissent, I am worried about the health of the people of our state.”

Sparrow Hospital is located on Michigan Avenue about a mile east of the Capitol. 

When questioned last Thursday about the assertion, Whitmer’s spokeswoman Tiffany Brown said the governor was referring to a tweet by Gongwer News Service Executive Editor and Publisher Zach Gorchow, showing an ambulance in traffic near the Capitol, as well as “multiple posts” from medical workers inside the hospital. 

The ambulance took five to seven minutes to make it through the vehicles — starting from the time it turned on its lights and sirens, Gorchow said.  

“What was not clear to me was whether the ambulance was called to a run and trying to get to a call or if the drivers had no run but were alarmed that traffic had not moved for close to an hour and used their lights and siren to clear a path,” he said.

Brown sent The News screen grabs showing Facebook posts from two Sparrow Hospital health care workers who said ambulances were blocked from entering the hospital. 

“I work at sparrow and I will tell you THEY ARE BLOCKED and ppl are HONKING their horns where people are trying to rest and recover!! SELFISH. Our employees can’t even get to work!! Our cancer patients can’t to their appointments!” Lindsay Bowman wrote last week on the WILX News 10 Facebook page. 

Capital Area Transportation Authority on Wednesday said service was temporarily disrupted downtown and surrounding areas because of the protests. 

“CATA is unable to accommodate life-sustaining and medically necessary trips to or from these areas,” the agency posted on Twitter. 

But hospital, ambulance and police officials said they had no reports of any patients being endangered by the protest.

Sparrow Hospital spokesman John Foren said last week that some hospital personnel were delayed in making their shifts on the day of the protest, causing some personnel to work past the ends of their normal shifts. 

But the ambulance entrance to and from the hospital remained clear, Foren said. The Sparrow spokesman said Thursday he had received no reports that ambulances were stuck in traffic farther out from the hospital, either.

Despite some “confusion,” Lansing police had no complaints about any ambulance being locked in traffic during an emergency, said Robert Merritt, a spokesman for the Lansing Police Department. When ambulances on non-emergency runs were in traffic, “rally participants slowly cleared a path,” he said.

“There were NO complaints from any emergency services vehicle being held up while on an emergency run (lights and siren),” Merritt said in an email. 

“There are many photos/videos floating around that show an ambulance moving slow within the vehicles in the rally. This ambulance and some other emergency services vehicles (not on emergency runs) were seen driving through parts of the rally.”

Mercy Ambulance, which is located just east of Sparrow on Michigan Avenue, also had no delays but some units did take alternate routes because of the traffic, said Dennis Palmer, president and CEO of Mercy Ambulance. 

The accommodations were no different from what the company would have to make if there were a Michigan State University game, a traffic crash or construction, Palmer said. 

“In fact, we were more prepared because we were given advance notice,” the Mercy Ambulance CEO said.

There was a potential for a delay and his employees remarked as much on social media, Palmer said. But there were no actual delays to service, he said.

While Lansing police were responsible for enforcement in the city at large, Michigan State Police had jurisdiction over the Capitol grounds. Michigan State Police said early on that, despite a lack of social distancing by some demonstrators, they would only intervene in the protest if there was a threat to human life or vandalism. 

Michigan State Police made one arrest during the hours-long protest when one protester allegedly assaulted another, but otherwise the crowds largely were “polite” and “respectful,” said First Lt. Darren Green. 

Lansing Mayor Andy Schor, likewise, has never maintained ambulances were trapped during the protest. But the mayor issued Friday a press release warning protesters that next time he would ask for mutual aid from local police departments to help manage the crowds and enforce social distancing.

“Lansing Police will monitor Lansing ordinance violations and cite offenders when we have available offices and as possible to ensure officer safety,” Schor said. “Violations such as excessive noise, purposely blocking roads, and public urination or defecation, and others.”

The rally organizer, the Michigan Conservative Coalition, sent a letter Sunday to Schor noting “an unrelated group” was responsible for the individuals who left their cars and protested on the Capitol lawn. 

Coalition President Rosanne Ponkowski said the group is not planning on organizing future events, but other groups were “co-opting” the name and idea of Operation Gridlock. Ponkowski said the group is encouraging residents to avoid any upcoming rallies. 

“Our goal was to bring attention to the irrational rules in place that were putting over 1,000,000 workers on the unemployment line,” Ponkowski wrote. “We feel the governor has heard the people’s message at Operation Gridlock and she needs time to act to restart the economy.  Now.”

eleblanc@detroitnews.com

This content was originally published here.

Concerts Won’t Return Until “Fall 2021 at the Earliest,” Health Expert Warns | Consequence of Sound

Large-scale gatherings such as conferences, sport events, and live concerts won’t be safe to attend until “fall 2021 at the earliest,” according to Zeke Emmanuel, director of the Healthcare Transformation Institute at the University of Pennsylvania.

Emmanuel was part of an expert panel assembled by the New York Times on life after the COVID-19 pandemic. The problem, according to Emmanuel, is “You can’t just flip a switch and open the whole of society up. It’s just not going to work. It’s too much. The virus will definitely flare back to the worst levels.”

As he sees it, “restarting the economy has to be done in stages,” and crowded events will be the last part of our old lives to return. He said,

“It does have to start with more physical distancing at a work site that allows people who are at lower risk to come back. Certain kinds of construction, or manufacturing or offices, in which you can maintain six-foot distances are more reasonable to start sooner. Larger gatherings — conferences, concerts, sporting events — when people say they’re going to reschedule this conference or graduation event for October 2020, I have no idea how they think that’s a plausible possibility. I think those things will be the last to return. Realistically we’re talking fall 2021 at the earliest.”

So why do we have to wait until the second half of 2021? That has to do with the development timeline of the coronavirus vaccine. And Emmanuel isn’t alone in thinking a vaccine will take 12-18 months — in fact, that seems to be the expert consensus.

Larry Brilliant, the epidemiologist who led the effort to eradicate smallpox, told The Economist, “I think we will have a vaccine that works in less than a couple of months.” Unfortunately, that’s the easy part. “Then it will be the arduous process of making sure that it is effective enough and that it is not harmful. And then we have to produce it. [America’s Director National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases] Tony Fauci’s estimate of 12 to 18 months before we have a vaccine, in sufficient quantities in place, is one that I agree with.”

But Brilliant, who also consulted on the 2011 Steven Soderbergh film Contagion, sounds even more pessimistic than Emmanuel. He thinks the COVID-19 virus will still be a problem — at least for a while — after the development of a vaccine.

“I just want to mention, once we have that vaccine, and we’ve mass vaccinated as many people as we could, there will still be outbreaks. People are not adding on to the backend of that time period the fact that we will then be chasing outbreaks, ping-pong-ing back and forth between countries. We will need to have the equivalent of the polio-eradication program or the smallpox-eradication program, hopefully at the WHO. And that mop-up—I hate to use that word when we’re talking about human beings—but that follow-on effort will take an additional period of time before we are truly safe.”

In other words, the re-opening of society will be slower and more painful than some are anticipating.

For now musicians have adapted with quarantine videos and isolation livestreams, as when Willie Nelson announced a digital Farm Aid with Neil Young, Dave Matthews, and more over the weekend. For a full list of upcoming concerts and livestreams, click here. But that’s not going to replace the lost revenue stream for middle-class and rising artists. If you want to help musicians impacted by the novel coronavirus, or are yourself a musician looking for help, check out our pandemic resource guide.

This content was originally published here.

Public-health emergency declared in LA County over coronavirus

Los Angeles County officials declared a local public health emergency regarding the coronavirus on Wednesday, March 4, as six new cases of the disease were revealed in the county in the last 48 hours.

LA county Supervisor Kathryn Barger speaks about proclaiming state of emergency in response to prevent spread of #Coronovirus #covid19 pic.twitter.com/q0CL55pXDw

— Olga Grigoryants (@OlgaGrigory) March 4, 2020

Barbara Ferrer, director of Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, said at a press conference with other county officials that leaders should expect more cases of #covid19 in the days ahead.

“If you’re sick with anything, we need people to stay home,” she said.

County officials stressed that they were acting out of “an abundance of caution” and not panic.

Appearing at a morning news conference attended by L.A. Department of Public Health officials, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and L.A. County Supervisors Kathryn Barger and Janice Hahn, the officials said the declaration would allow greater coordination among various levels of government.

Barbara Ferrer, director of Los Angeles County Department of Public Health speaks about the county’s response to #covid19 pic.twitter.com/aFEby7txpq

— Olga Grigoryants (@OlgaGrigory) March 4, 2020

The city of Pasadena will declare a state of emergency today, too, health officials said, though the city has yet to report any confirmed cases of the virus. The city operates its own health department.

The six new cases were confirmed Tuesday night with positive lab results and were linked to an “assumed known exposure,” according to Ferrer. A vaccine against the virus is not yet available, Ferrer said.

“There’s either a travel history to an area with an outbreak, there’s exposure to known travelers coming from areas where there’s an outbreak, or the person is in close contact with a confirmed case,” she said.

“This means as of today, we still don’t have known cases of community transmission.”

Ferrer laid out a series of steps the department will be taking in the days and weeks ahead:

“We are increasing our capacity for testing at our local public health lab. (It is) among 10 California health labs that have received CDC test kits and we have additional kits on the way. We are currently testing and have been since last Wednesday,” Ferrer said.

“We will ensure that people who test positive for the novel coronavirus and their close contacts are quickly identified and closely monitored and supported while they are in isolation and/or quarantine.”

Ferrer also said the department will begin daily radio briefings Thursday on three different stations, and is posting new guidelines for “childcare facilities, schools, colleges and universities, employers, hotels, public safety responders, shelters, and parents on how they can prepare for and slow the spread of the virus, officially known as COVID-19.

Additionally, the department is sending out technical assistance teams on site visits to interim housing facilities to make sure all necessary precautions are taken.

The county’s pandemic response plan for COVID-19 in accordance with guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.

On Tuesday night, hours after the news conference was announced, officials with Kaiser Permanente confirmed to various media outlets that it was treating a newly diagnosed coronavirus patient in Los Angeles.

“Kaiser Permanente is overseeing the care of a coronavirus patient who is home in self-isolation and being treated on an outpatient basis,” according to a Kaiser statement. “We are in touch with and monitoring the patient.”

No other details were released about the patient or how the person may have been exposed to the illness that has killed more than 3,100 people worldwide, mostly in China. Nine deaths have been reported in the United States, all in Washington state. More than 93,000 cases of the illness, officially known as COVID-19, have been confirmed around the globe.

A previous confirmed coronavirus patient in Los Angeles County has since recovered and been released from treatment.

The county Board of Supervisors and the Los Angeles City Council are both expected to hear reports during their Wednesday meetings about the status of the illness locally.

News of the new Los Angeles cases came on the heels of Orange County health officials announcing Tuesday that two more residents there had tested positive locally for the virus. Those diagnoses were still awaiting confirmation from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, according to the Orange County Health Care Agency.

Orange County also had a previous coronavirus patient who has also recovered.

The newest Orange County patients are a man in his 60s and a woman in her 30s who had recently traveled to countries with widespread outbreaks of COVID-19. One media report indicated that the pair had both traveled —separately — to Italy.

Dr. Nichole Quick, Orange County’s health officer, credited the discovery of the new patients to increased local testing ability.

“The more you look for something, the more likely you are to find it,” she said. “… Now that our Public Health Laboratory is able to perform COVID-19 testing, we expect to see more cases here in Orange County. Our residents should take everyday precautions to prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses like covering your coughs and sneezes, avoiding touching your face, and washing your hands frequently.”

There have been nine deaths from coronavirus in the United States, all in Washington state. Worldwide, roughly 93,000 cases of COVID-19 have been reported, and more than 3,100 deaths.

City News Service contributed to this story.

This content was originally published here.

What Bernie Sanders Isn’t Telling You About Canadian Health Care

All Americans, regardless of political party, want access to timely, high-quality health care. The question is how to get there. Do we harness the power and innovation of the private sector, or do we hand it to the government and hope for the best?

Canada has chosen the latter route, and at one of the most recent debates among Democratic presidential candidates, Bernie Sanders once again touted its government-run health care system as a model for America.

Alas, Sanders’ sanitized version of Canadian health care doesn’t remotely fit the facts.

No more out-of-pocket expenses? In reality, Canadians’ out-of-pocket health costs are nearly identical to what Americans pay—a difference of roughly $15 per month. In return, Canadians pay up to 50% more in taxes than Americans, with government health costs alone accounting for $9,000 in additional taxes per year. This comes to roughly $50 in additional taxes per dollar saved in out-of-pocket costs.

Keep in mind these are only the beginning of the financial hits from “Medicare for All.” Canada’s public system does not cover many large health costs, from pharmaceuticals to nursing homes to dental and vision.

As a result, public health spending in Canada accounts for only 70% of total health spending. In contrast, Medicare for All proposals promise 100% coverage. This suggests the financial burdens on Americans, and distortions to care, would be far greater than what Canadians already suffer.

Canada’s limited coverage may surprise Americans, but the key is understanding what “universal” means in “universal care.”

Universal systems mean everybody is forced to join the public system. It emphatically does not mean everything is free. Indeed, out-of-pocket costs are actually significantly higher in Sweden, Denmark, and Norway than they are in America.

More serious than the financial burdens is what happens to quality of care in a government-run system.

Canada’s total health costs are about one-third cheaper than the U.S. as a percent of gross domestic product, but this is achieved by undesirable cost-control practices. For example, care is ruthlessly rationed, with waiting lists running into months or years.

The system also cuts corners by using older and cheaper drugs and skimping on modern equipment. Canada today has fewer MRI units per capita than Turkey or Latvia. Moreover, underinvestment in facilities and staff has reached the point where Canadians are being treated in hospital hallways.

Predictably, Canada’s emergency rooms are packed. In the province of Quebec, wait times average over four hours, leading many patients to just give up, go home, and hope for the best.

Seeing a specialist can take a shockingly long time. One doctor in Ontario called in a referral for a neurologist and was told there was a four-and-a-half year waiting list.

A 16-year-old boy in British Columbia waited three years for an urgent surgery, during which his condition worsened and he was left paraplegic. One Montreal man finally got the call for his long-delayed urgent surgery—but it came two months after he had died.

Canadians have found a way to escape the rationing, the long waits, and substandard equipment. They go to the U.S.

Every year, more than 50,000 Canadians fly to get their surgeries here because they can get high-quality care and fast treatment at a reasonable price. They willingly pay cash for care that, for the vast majority of Americans, is covered by insurance, private or public.

Far from being a model of government-run health care, Canada serves as a warning of the unintended consequences of socialized medicine: high taxes, long waits, staff shortages, and substandard drugs and equipment. Those suffering the most are the poor, who cannot afford to fly abroad for timely treatment.

Far from the feel-good rhetoric, socialized medicine in Canada has proved a bait-and-switch that has never lived up to the promise.

In Washington today, there are very sound proposals on the table to reduce U.S. health care costs. They include reforms to assure price transparency, increase competition, and repeal price-hiking mandates. That is the best way forward.

Canada’s system of socialized medicine has created high taxes and suffering patients. That’s not what Americans want or deserve.

Originally published by Lincoln Journal Star

The post What Bernie Sanders Isn’t Telling You About Canadian Health Care appeared first on The Daily Signal.

This content was originally published here.

Behind the Scenes at Our Invisalign® Treatment Consultation – Happy Mothering

Last Updated on

This post was sponsored by the Invisalign® brand and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.

A couple of months ago, we were presented with the opportunity to partner with the Invisalign® brand for complimentary treatment for our daughters. Our girls are 9 and 11, so they’re right at the age where we are exploring different options for orthodontic treatment. We knew Zoë definitely needed to have her overbite corrected and Kaylee has expressed interest in having her teeth straightened, so they were both pretty excited to go see the orthodontist.

We were worried about braces since snowboarding is such a huge part of the girls’ lives. I can’t imagine how painful it would be to smack your face with braces. So the idea of Invisalign treatment over traditional braces was definitely appealing to all of us.

To find out if they qualified for treatment, we scheduled an initial consultation for both girls! Brian even created a really great video of our entire visit so you can actually experience the initial consultation first hand. After watching the video, you can read more details about our experience under the video.

What is Invisalign Treatment?

If you’re not familiar with Invisalign treatment, it’s an alternative to traditional braces. It’s actually considered the most advanced aligner system in the world! Unlike braces, Invisalign treatment is a convenient system for straightening teeth that allows you to remove the nearly clear aligners to enjoy the foods you love and maintain good oral hygiene.

How it works is that you get a series of clear aligners made that will slowly straighten your teeth by shifting them just a little bit at a time. The material the aligners are made from has been shown to straighten teeth more predictably than any other clear aligners*, so that’s something to keep in mind when you’re considering your options. I was surprised to learn that Invisalign clear aligners are able to move teeth horizontally, vertically, and can even rotate them if necessary. I always assumed, incorrectly, that they were only for minor corrections.

* Compared to off-the-shelf, single layer .030in material

Since they’ve been on the market for over 20 years now, they’ve had a lot of experience helping people with everything from simple to complex orthodontic cases. So far, more than 6 million people have gone through Invisalign treatment**.

** Data on file at Align Technology as of October 29, 2018

Since our daughters snowboard and are very active, we were much more interested in Invisalign clear aligners than traditional braces.

In case you’re curious, the cost of Invisalign treatment is often comparable to braces and many dental insurance plans cover Invisalign aligners just as they would any other orthodontic treatment, so check with your provider.

Our Initial Consultation

Our initial consultation was with Hoff Orthodontics, which is a local Invisalign-trained orthodontic practice.

When we first walked in, we were greeted and checked in. Then we were given a tour of the office.

After the tour, it was straight over to imaging for both girls. They took pictures of their face, all of their teeth and their bite.

Then did a 3D scan of their heads so we could see everything that is going on.

We then headed back over to the Dr. Hoff’s office where he could examine the girls’ mouths and talk about the imaging with us. We discussed Kaylee first since she’s younger.

Kaylee Still Has a Lot of Baby Teeth

Right now, Kaylee isn’t quite ready for Invisalign clear aligners because she still has too many baby teeth, as you can see in the 3D image of her head. We did learn, however, that she needed to have a special retainer made to hold space in her mouth for her adult teeth to come in properly.

We’ll reevaluate whether she’s a good candidate for Invisalign treatment again when she has lost her baby teeth.

Zoë is Ready for Invisalign Treatment

After we finished up talking about Kaylee, it was time to talk about Zoë. She just turned 11, but she only has one baby tooth left. We knew she had an overbite, but we didn’t realize she had other things in her mouth that needed to be corrected like a cross-bite.

Dr. Hoff explained, in detail, the issues with Zoë’s teeth, then concluded that she would be a good candidate for Invisalign treatment. He expects her treatment to take up to two years to complete.

He explained the advantages of Invisalign treatment over traditional braces to us (you can watch his full talk in the video above). Some of the points he made were that eating food is easier since braces aren’t in the way and maintaining good oral hygiene is easier since you’re not trying to brush around brackets. You simply remove your aligners in order to eat, brush, and floss as you normally would.

We live in the mountains and have to drive over an hour each way to the orthodontist. That’s no big deal, we’re used to it, but with traditional braces, there are emergencies that need to be addressed. A bracket comes loose, a wire breaks or the wire is poking into your child’s gums and it’s straight to the orthodontist to get it fixed.

You don’t have those same issues with Invisalign clear aligners. There are no wires to worry about and no emergency appointments to fix them if they break. That is a huge reassurance for us since we do live so far from the orthodontist.

No More Pink Goo: On to Digital Impressions

After we decided that Zoë was ready for treatment, it was straight to get the scans to have her Invisalign clear aligners made. It was such a fascinating process! You have to watch the video further up in this post to see how it works.

When I had braces, I had to bite into that messy pink goo to get my impressions done. It tasted awful and it made me gag. If you had braces, then you probably have vivid memories of that experience too. While you can still use the goo for impressions if your practice doesn’t have a digital scanner, you can now also receive impressions digitally with Invisalign treatment, on their iTero® digital scanner. My sweet daughter didn’t have to experience my childhood memory of the pink goo.

The iTero® scanner takes thousands (6,000 to be exact***) of images every second to recreate a 3D digital image of the inside of your child’s mouth on the computer. This allows the orthodontist to create a treatment plan and the Invisalign brand to create your child’s clear aligners.

*** Data on file at Align Technology as of November 7, 2018

When they’re done scanning, you even get to see a rendering of what your child’s new smile could look like. It’s really neat!

Follow Zoë’s Invisalign Treatment Journey

We’ll be talking about Zoë’s Invisalign treatment journey on the blog and social media over the next year. In the next post, you’ll get to see Zoë in her Invisalign clear aligners, so stay tuned!

Find an Invisalign Treatment Provider

If you’re curious whether Invisalign treatment is right for your child, you can use the Doctor Locator feature on the Invisalign® brand website to find an Invisalign-trained orthodontist in your area.

Have you or your child had Invisalign treatment? I’d love to hear your experience in the comments.

Pin this post to your Parenting or Health board!

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The business of dentistry revolves around patient communication

To succeed as a dentist, you need to be able to exercise clinical skills and training, but you also need to be able to communicate with patients and build a rapport.

In an age where reviews and feedback carry more weight than ever before, communication and customer service are essential elements of modern-day dental business success.

Why is communication important?

There are several reasons why communication is important both in terms of making patients feel comfortable and increasing your chances of running a successful dental business.

Customer service

If you were to put yourself in your patient’s shoes, how would you feel if you climbed into a dental chair, and your dentist had nothing to say or they came across as aloof or disinterested? Many patients want to be greeted with a smile, they want to know what is going to happen to them when they get into that chair, and they want to be reassured. Dental anxiety is an incredibly prevalent problem, and if you’re feeling anxious, a friendly, talkative, supportive dentist can make all the difference. Communication can help to put patients at ease, it can lower levels of anxiety and fear, and it can also create a much warmer and more pleasant atmosphere. Many people read reviews and ask for recommendations before choosing a dentist today, and customer service is an integral factor in review scores. A patient may be reluctant to recommend a dentist even if they have done a brilliant job if they weren’t polite, for example.

Information and advice

Clear communication is also key for informing patients about dental conditions say’s Dr Mark Hughes from Define Clinic, offering advice and information and providing details about costs and the types of treatment that could be beneficial. As a dentist, you’re familiar with all the jargon and technical terms, but the majority of people you come across won’t necessarily know what you mean if you speak in dental talk.

If there is an issue, for example, a patient has a cavity, they want to know what the problem is, why it’s potentially dangerous, what can be done about it, and how much treatment is going to cost. If you can convey information succinctly and clearly, this will be hugely beneficial for your patients. In many cases, patients feel scared because they don’t fully understand what the issue is and what the solution entails.

If you tell somebody they need a root canal, for example, they might immediately feel panicked and terrified. If you relay this information and then take the time to explain what that procedure involves, how you can reduce and prevent pain, and how it will benefit them moving forward, this could help to make the patient feel more comfortable and content.

Effective communication methods

We tend to think of communication as talking, but there are other ways of opening up channels of communication and building a bond with patients. Body language is important, and it’s crucial to listen, as well as to talk. Welcome your patients with a smile, engage in eye contact, and ask them how they are. Listen to them if they have concerns or questions.

Communication in the 21stcentury doesn’t just involve face to face contact in a dental surgery. Today, there are multiple channels open to dentists, and you can reach out to patients in many different ways, for example, sending text reminders for appointments and sharing news and events at the practice via social media sites like Facebook. Use platforms like this to interact with clients, respond to queries and show off the treatments and services you’re offering.

Communication plays an increasingly important role in modern dentistry. Building bonds with patients and creating a friendly atmosphere benefits patients, as well as dentists aiming to run successful businesses, attract new clients and keep hold of existing patients.

Photo by Daniel Frank on Unsplash

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The business of dentistry revolves around patient communication

This content was originally published here.

If U.S. doesn’t ‘flatten the curve,’ severe cases of COVID-19 will overrun health system | PBS NewsHour

Judy Woodruff:

One term you’re likely hearing a lot about to help deal with the coronavirus is what’s known as flattening the curve.

Epidemiologists say, if not enough protective measures are taken, there’ll be a sharply rising number of cases, as shown in this pale blue spike, a huge jump over a very short period of time. That would strain the capacity of our health system.

But flattening the curve, reflected by the lower gray swell, is achieved by taking strong measures, like physical and social distancing, to make sure the number of cases increases more gradually.

Dr. Asaf Bitton has been talking about this very issue. He’s with Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. And he joins us now.

Dr. Bitton, between Washington and the states, are the American people now being given enough guidance to induce them to do the right thing?

So while people who work perhaps in nonessential services may want to continue that work, and I’m very sympathetic to it, unfortunately, the speed of the rise of this epidemic may make necessary more involuntary closures or restrictions.

Asaf Bitton:

Well, we have — according to the American Hospital Association a couple of years ago, we have a little over 900,000 beds. We have about 50,000 medical ICU beds that are staffed and another 50,000 other type of ICU beds that are staffed, and, in total, about 160,000 vents.

What that means is, even in a moderate scenario, like predicted by the John Hopkins Center for Health Security, if it came at once, we wouldn’t really have the capacity. That would overwhelm that existing capacity.

So what is needed now is for people to take the community mitigation and social distancing strategies to flatten the curve, to spread that out, so that, if those cases emerge — and it’s hard to predict, but it’s possible at this point — it at least can emerge over an increased amount of time.

Otherwise, this is going to be very difficult on our health system and our health care workers.

This content was originally published here.

Dentistry’s Suicide Dilemma – Oral Health Group

When will the loss of life due to suicide begin to decline? In 2018 the CDCA released a study which showed an increase in suicide rates in every state except Nevada. Don’t get too excited about moving to Nevada, she remains in the top five states with the highest rates. Fifty percent of the states had an increase of at least thirty percent. This is terrible on its own. What makes these statistics even sadder is the fact that too many of our dental industry colleagues are a part of the growing numbers.

I was devastated to learn a few days ago of a well-loved dentist in Australia taking his own life. The shock and grief expressed by so many of his friends and family members is unfortunately not a unique occurrence. Nor are the endless questions as to why or the statements of “I had no idea”. A litany of unanswerable questions will haunt those left behind for eternity. “Why didn’t they tell me?”or, “Why didn’t they love me enough to stay” plays repeatedly in the minds of loved ones. The emphatic “I would have helped” or “I would have given him/her more attention” resounds equally loud. The would haves, could haves, and should haves, tear hearts to pieces. Self-blame and self-annihilation steal any chance for rational thought away. They are left completely ravished in a pit of despair.

The suicide of a dentist seems to feel especially shocking. Mind naturally shift to listing all the reasons it is unfathomable. Dentists are educated, make a lot of money, are well respected in their professional and private communities, live in a beautiful home in the best of neighborhoods, are married to a gorgeous wife/husband, and have intelligent and talented children. You’re begin to think you would instantly trade your life for one like that. What could possibly be so wrong? The answer is quite simple. Fear of exposure. The dentists I spoke with shared the following reasons for their isolation and despair: Debt, failing practice due to lack of leadership/management training, public shaming due to a procedural incident, lack of confidence and/or distain as a care provider. Too much pressure. So much money, time, and effort put forth to walk away. Finally, the overwhelming belief that they are a disgrace to them-self, the profession, and their family. How could anyone possibly support or understand their leaving the profession? Thoughts of dying begin as a whisper, quickly become a chorus, and suddenly death becomes not only a viable option, but the desired solution.

In some cases, friends or family are aware that suicide ideation exists because of spoken words, or a failed attempt. These families live in constant fear that the call or knock on the door will someday come. And as much as they love them, and as hard as they try to hold their loved ones here on this earth, some choose to leave anyway. Those who do not understand, become angry believe suicide to be the most selfish of all acts. This claim is made by those who have never experienced devastating mental despair.

The mental anguish, and physical pain, that consume the suicidal mind and body are greater than any words anyone might speak. The darkness does not allow for thoughts of a brighter tomorrow or the ability to think positively. The only thing the suicidal mind is positive of…is that it doesn’t want to exist in this world one more day.

Having lived both sides…wanting to commit suicide, and experiencing the loss of a family member, and the nearly successful attempt of another, I can truly understand both. For quite a long time, I also believed the act of suicide to be cowardly and selfish. Today, I no longer see it that way. Severe depression is an illness. Like cancer or other illnesses that result in a slow and painful death, suicidal people suffer the same. We the loved ones, fight tirelessly to hold them in that pain. So, I ask you, who is right? Who is wrong? Where does the selfishness truly lie? Yes, some like me, find a way out of the darkness. Others do not. When my mother was dying of cancer, I tearfully gave her permission to let go. Her pain was great, and her body worn out. We freely offer release when we can see the physical suffering. Why can we not do this for suffering not visible to the naked eye? The suffering is equally unbearable.

I read an article discussing the tragic ending of life for those who decided to jump from the burning World Trade Center to avoid a gruesome and fiery death. The author contended that the act of jumping was in fact, suicide. I agree. When left with the decision of suffering a horrible demise, or dying instantly, they chose an immediate end to life. Suicides are the same…they too choose immediate death over unknown pain and continued suffering.

To be clear, I do not encourage, nor condone suicide. However, I do empathize. In 2012, I had laid out my own plan. After crying non-stop for three months, my daughter informed me that I was unsuitable to be around my grand-daughters. This was it. I had two choices: I could dig deep and put all fear of shame aside and fight for my life. Or, I could see my plan through and no longer deal with any of it. I thank God every day that I am still alive. But never once have I felt selfish or cowardly. Not everyone shares the same will or desire to fight. I get it.

I was recently told by a prospective employer that openly discussing my experiences with suicide and depression would be bad for their business. I contend that this employer is bad for humanity. This needs to be talked about. Openly and publicly. Not doing so will allow the stigma that suffering from mental health issues is shameful and disgusting. I am asking each of you right now, this very second, to raise up your heads and voices. Together we have the power to pave the way for hope, support, and understanding. No one needs to ever feel hopeless and isolated again.

About the Author
Sue Jeffries RDH, BSDH. Sue’s start in dentistry began in 1983. After twenty years as a dental technician, she retired and subsequently spent the next fifteen years practicing dental hygiene and managing dental offices. Today, Sue is the owner of Your Vivacious Practice LLC and a powerful advocate, who raises awareness on critical social and business issues of bullying, mental health, suicide, and overall well-being. She is a wife, mother, grandmother, speaker, consultant, and writer who leaves audiences laughing, crying, and empowered.

This content was originally published here.

‘Now Is the Time for Solidarity’: Bernie Sanders Addresses Health and Economic Crisis Facing US as Coronavirus Spreads

Good afternoon, everybody. In the last few days, we have seen the crisis of the coronavirus continue to grow exponentially.

Let me be absolutely clear: in terms of potential deaths and the impact on our economy, the crisis we face from coronavirus is on the scale of a major war, and we must act accordingly.

Nobody knows how many fatalities we may see, but they could equal or surpass the U.S. casualties we saw in World War II.

It is an absolute moral imperative that our response — as a government, as a society, as business communities, and as individuals — meets the enormity of this crisis.

As people work from home and are directed to self-quarantine, it will be easy to feel like we are in this alone, or that we must only worry about ourselves and let everyone else fend for themselves.

That is a very dangerous mistake. First and foremost, we must remember that we are in this together.

Now is the time for solidarity. We must fight with love and compassion for those most vulnerable to the effects of this pandemic.

If our neighbor or co-worker gets sick, we have the potential to get sick. If our neighbors lose their jobs, then our local economies suffer, and we may lose our jobs. If doctors and nurses do not have the equipment and staffing capacity they need now, people we know and love may die.

Unfortunately, in this time of international crisis, the current administration is largely incompetent, and its incompetence and recklessness has threatened the lives of many people.

So today I’d like to give an overview of what we must do as a nation.

First – we are dealing with a national emergency and the president should declare one now.

Next, because President Trump is unable and unwilling to lead selflessly, we must immediately convene an emergency, bipartisan authority of experts to support and direct a response that is comprehensive, compassionate, and based first and foremost on science and fact.

We must aggressively make certain that the public and private sectors are cooperating with each other. And we need national and state hotlines staffed with well-trained people who have the best information available.

Among many questions, people need to know: what are the symptoms of coronavirus? When should I seek medical treatment? Where do I go for a test?

The American people deserve transparency, something the Trump administration has fought day after day to stifle. We need daily information — clear, science-based information — from credible scientific voices, not politicians.

And during this crisis, we must make sure we care for the communities most vulnerable to the health and economic pain that’s coming — those in nursing homes and rehabilitation facilities, those confined in immigration detention centers, those who are currently incarcerated, and all people regardless of immigration status.

Unfortunately, the United States is at a severe disadvantage, because, unlike every other major country on earth, we do not guarantee health care as a human right. The result is that millions of people in this country cannot afford to go to a doctor, let alone pay for a coronavirus test.

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So while we work to pass a Medicare for All single-payer system, the United States government must be clear that in the midst of this emergency, that everyone in our country — regardless of income or where they live — must be able to get all of the health care they need without cost.

Obviously, when a vaccine or other effective treatment is developed, it must be free of charge.

We cannot live in a nation where if you have the money you get the treatment you need to survive, but if you’re working class or poor you get to the end of the line. That would be morally unacceptable.

Further, we need emergency funding right now for paid family and medical leave.  Anyone who is sick should be able to stay home during this emergency, and receive their paycheck. 

What we do not want to see is at a time when half of our people are living paycheck to paycheck, when they need to go to work in order to take care of their family, we do not want to see people going to work who are sick and can spread the coronavirus.

We also need an immediate expansion of community health centers in this country so that every American will have access to a nearby healthcare facility.

Where do I go? How do I get a test? How do I get the results of that test? We need greatly to expand our primary health care capabilities in this country and that includes expanding community health care centers.

We need to determine the status of our testing and processing for the coronavirus. The government must respond aggressively to make certain that we in fact do have the latest and most effective test available, and the quickest means of processing those tests.

There are other countries around the world who are doing better than we are in that regard. We should be learning from them.

No one disputes that there is a major shortage of ICU units, and ventilators that are needed to respond to this crisis. The federal government must work aggressively with the private sector to make sure that this equipment is available to hospitals and the rest of the medical community.

Our current healthcare system does not have the doctors and nurses we currently need. We are understaffed. During this crisis, we need to mobilize medical residents, retired medical professionals, and other medical personnel to help us deal with this crisis.

We need to make sure that doctors, nurses and medical professionals have the instructions and personal protective equipment that they need.

This is not only because we care about the well-being of medical professionals — but also because if they go down, our capability to respond to this crisis is significantly diminished.

The pharmaceutical industry must be told in no uncertain terms that the medicines that they manufacture for this crisis will be sold at cost. This is not the time for profiteering or price gouging.

The coronavirus is already causing a global economic meltdown, which is impacting people throughout the world and in our own country, and it is especially dangerous for low income and working families the most. People who today, before the crisis, were struggling economically.

Instead of providing more tax breaks to the top one percent and large corporations, we need to provide economic assistance to the elderly – and I worry very much about elderly people in this country today, many of whom are isolated and many of whom do not have a lot of money.

We need to worry about those who are already sick. We need to worry about working families with children, people with disabilities, the homeless and all those who are vulnerable.

We need to provide in that context emergency unemployment assistance to anyone who loses their job through no fault of their own. 

Right now, 23 percent of those who are eligible to receive unemployment compensation do not receive it. 

Under our proposal, everyone who loses a job must qualify for unemployment compensation at least 100 percent of their prior salary with a cap of $1,150 a week or $60,000 a year. 

In addition, those who depend on tips – and the restaurant industry is suffering very much from the meltdown – gig workers, domestic workers, and independent contractors shall also qualify for unemployment insurance to make up for the income that they lose during this crisis.

We need to make sure that the elderly, people with disabilities and families with children have access to nutritious food. That means expanding the Meals on Wheel program, the school lunch program and SNAP so that no one goes hungry during this crisis and everyone who cannot leave their home can receive nutritious meals delivered directly to where they live.

We need also in this economic crisis to place an immediate moratorium on evictions, foreclosures, and on utility shut-offs so that no one loses their home during this crisis and that everyone has access to clean water, electricity, heat and air conditioning.

We need to construct emergency homeless shelters to make sure that the homeless, survivors of domestic violence and college students quarantined off campus are able to receive the shelter, the healthcare and the nutrition they need.

We need to provide emergency lending to small and medium sized businesses to cover payroll, new construction of manufacturing facilities, and production of emergency supplies such as masks and ventilators.

Here is the bottom line. When we are dealing with this crisis, we need to listen to the scientists, to the researchers, to the medical folks, not politicians.

We need an emergency response to this crisis and we need it now.

We need more doctors and nurses in underserved areas.

We need to make sure that workers who lose their jobs in this crisis receive the unemployment assistance they need.

And in this moment, we need to make sure that in the future after this crisis is behind us, we build a health care system that makes sure that every person in this country is guaranteed the health care that they need. 

This content was originally published here.