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A Tale of Two Hygienists Podcast

Feb 18, 2019

Dr. Josefine Ortiz Wolfe is a registered dental hygienist who writes and educates online and in person as The Informed Hygienist. She was kind to drop by on her way to a lecture in New York, and in this interview she stresses the importance of closing the gap between what professionals know and how that knowledge is actually put to work, connecting up-to-date dental research to clinical practice.

In this bonus episode sponsored by Crest+Oral-B, Josefine discusses how even well-trained dentists and hygienists can fall behind current research, lists some resources you can use to keep on top of the latest knowledge, and suggests we fight back against the urge to pull a tooth rather than treat it.


Interview begins: 1:27

- Josephine's goal for her latest lecture and how she hopes it will benefit both practitioners and patients.

- How the current standard of dental training means new practitioners unfortunately remain behind the times.

- The tricky way our brain confuses what we instinctively know about dentistry with what we think we know.

- Weeding out the unconscious biases that get in the way of accurate diagnoses and treatments.

- Some strategies and resources for keeping up to date with the latest research and policies.

- What to do when a patient pushes back against newer ideas with what they think is traditional and accepted.

- Dealing with difference in opinion and suggested treatment between disparate medical fields.

- The responsibility those in the dental field and related professions to provide the most accurate, up-to-date information to both clients and untrained staff.

- Alternatives to tooth removal and why we shouldn't go right for the pliers.

- Why treating the result of a disease isn't the same as treating the problem itself.

- Not allowing an insurance policy get in the way of the most ethical, responsible treatment.


"Our best interest—our only interest—is the best interest of the patient."

No"If we're not able to actually get our research into the hands of clinicians, our research is pretty much mute."

"I'm not gonna remember something I learned ten years ago if I don't constantly refresh my mind with it."

"The last thing you ever want to say is 'Well, what I learned in school was...'"

"As far as the patient is concerned, we are their #1 advocate.”


The Informed Hygienist on Facebook -

The Informed Hygienist on Twitter -

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry -

American Academy of Periodontology -

THIS EPISODE COUNTS FOR CE! - but read the disclaimer below as it might not count for your state.

Go here to take the test and get your CE Credit!
Approved Pace Program Provider FAGD/MAGD Credit Approval Does Not Imply Acceptance By A State Or Provincial Board of Dentistry Or AGD Endorsement. 1/1/18- 12/31/19 Provider #373236