Why Stretches for Dental Hygienists Matter

According to the West Coast District Dental Association, pain in dental workers has been on the rise since the 1960’s. Studies have shown that longer procedures and fewer breaks are contributing to muscular imbalances, decreased blood flow(ischemia) and impaired vertebral disk movement, as well as tender spots in the muscle tissue. In fact, “up to 81% of hygienists experience work-related pain in a 12-month period,” as mentioned in RDH Magazine.

The good news is, regular stretching throughout the workday can be a big help. And you can reap significant benefits in just seconds at a time, including:

  • Less pain
  • More relaxation
  • Lower risk of injury
  • Improved range of movement
  • And MORE!

Chairside Stretches for Pain-Free Dental Hygienists

Review this handy infographic—better yet, print it out—for convenient chairside stretches you could start doing right now. Please keep in mind that these stretches are suggestions and not to be taken as medical advice. Listen to your body and consult your physician to determine the stretching and exercise plan that’s right for you. These stretches are adapted from the Dental Economics article, “It’s a S-T-R-E-T-C-H.”

It’s Not Just About Stretching in the Dental Office

It’s important to keep in mind that in addition to stretching regularly throughout the day, your lifestyle and work habits can be modified to prevent pain, discomfort, and injury from getting in your way. Be sure to check out this past blog post “Dental Gloves, Self-Care, and Hand Pain Prevention” to learn more. Also, view our selection of ergonomic dental supplies to make your work more comfortable, such as the SplatrFREE Swangle 360° Contra Prophy Angle, QualiTouch Nitrile Left/Right Fitted Gloves and Dentsply Professional’s RDH Freedom Cordless Prophy System.

In the meantime, let us know…What are you doing to keep your staff and yourself well at the office?