Dental Hygienist Spotlight: Deborah McGlynn

Name: Deborah McGlynn RDH, BS

Where you went to school/graduation year?

Clark College, Vancouver, WA.  Graduated 1981 from Dental Hygiene

University of Washington, Seattle, WA.  Graduated 1983 with BS

What are you doing know?

 I work in private practice 3 days per week

Train dental hygiene students and hygienists privately on clinical skills and ergonomics,

I am the Managing Director and Continuing Education Officer for my company DH Cubed, LLC

 What was the inspiration of your new business?

 I started DH Cubed, LLC because as a personal dental hygiene trainer of 17 years and a dental hygiene educator for 13 years prior to that, I began to realize every person I gave private lessons to needed help on the same fundamental concepts.   I started to brainstorm on how I could get this live training to more people.  This is what inspired me to begin to develop the experiential, innovative training we have developed at DH Cubed.

I am very passionate about bringing ergonomics to dental hygiene to decrease the work related injury rate that is present. The basis of our training is to increase skills and efficiency while decreasing pain and injury for dental hygienists.    

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Any funny stories from practice?

 After being a hygienists for 36 years it’s hard to pick just one funny story, given the nature of working with people right?! But, one of the funniest things that sticks in my mind is the time I was working on a 8mm pocket on #16D!!!!!!  HARD!! Right?  I was struggling and thinking so hard about what I was feeling and trying to get into the pocket, let alone get to the base of the pocket!  About 10 minutes into this struggle I realized I had my left fulcrum finger for my mirror anchored up the patients left nostril…holding on for dear life!!!  I couldn’t believe it!  What was I going to say to the patient or how was I going to get my finger out of his nose gracefully!!  What must he be thinking?  To save both of us embarrassment, I just quietly removed my finger, changed my glove, and went back to working on the distal of #16.  I didn’t say a word! 

To this day I still don’t know what that patient must have been thinking!

Any advice for a brand new hygienist? 

Never give up!  Never give up on yourself and never give up on your patients. There are days when this job is really difficult.  You have to deal with patient’s fears, stressors they may be experiencing by being there or just in their lives, your stressors, working in a tight confined space in the mouth, let alone the mess their mouth may be in.  

Never give up!  This career is so rewarding.  I love the challenges it gives me.  The challenge of calming the patient down and having them smile at the end of the appointment, the challenge of getting their mouth really healthy and having them take on the responsibility of taking care of their own health, the challenges of connecting with that teenager that barely says anything while in your chair, the challenges of keeping yourself motivated…and on and on and on….

You can make your career whatever you want it to be!  Why not make it great!


Want to win a OneTen for yourself, plus receive 2 free CE's when you learn about all sharpening and their product? "Like" the DH Cubed Facebook page, then comment below how you currently sharpen (sharpening service, paper guide, eyeball it, etc.) We'll pick a winner next week!!