I am a dental hygienist. My job consists of caring for people and trying to make them as comfortable as possible when they are in my chair. As dental hygienists, we are taught patient centered care, and for good reason. We need to learn how to offer our care with the minimal amount of pain and discomfort to our patients.
But wait...what about us?
Somewhere between adjusting the patient chair to their comfort, not having them move their head so as not to disturb them, and offering pillows and blankets, we have lost the notion of caring for ourselves. First. Before we begin to care for our patients.
Practicing proper ergonomics and posture is a form of self care. We are telling ourselves we are important. We are realizing that in order to perform the job we love to the best of our ability, we need to take care of ourselves first. We are also telling ourselves our passions and activities outside of work are important, our friends and families are important, and and we deserve to enjoy all of it without pain.
So when you are about to bring your patient back, stop and think, “How am I going to take care of myself during this next hour?”
Remember... you can’t pour from an empty cup.
Take care of yourself, you are worth it.