Dental Office Noise is Causing Noise Induced Hearing Loss and Tinnitus
Noisy Like A School Lunchroom Crossed With a Subway Station
Rebecca K. Horton, RDA
I saw an ad for a class coming up today with the subject line: CHANGING HOW WE FEEL BY CHANGING HOW WE THINK. I don’t know about you, but I’ve had plenty of positive thinking classes in my time, and I’ve read dozens of books on the subject, even recorded an audiobook called “100 Tips for Everyday Anger Management”, available on I-Tunes. It made me stop and think. Hmmmm. Maybe CHANGING HOW WE THINK BY CHANGING THE WAY WE FEEL is what we really need.
I had a frank talk with our staff today about their perception of noise in the dental office. Apparently, I DO NOT KNOW EVERYTHING. Yet.
Sara said “Sometimes I go to the bathroom and hold my hands over my ears and pray to MAKE IT STOP, LORD! when everyone is talking with their patients all at once, the television is on in every room, the radio is on, kids are on their cell phones, equipment is buzzing, the phone is ringing, the doorbell, the lab, the crying…”
Lisa said “Sometimes the suction bothers me so much that I get into my car at the end of the day and I cannot stand to have the radio on – I drive home in silence. I am so relieved to have the quiet.”
Dr. said “I lose my train of thought when the office is too noisy and I find myself getting impatient with everyone, myself included. I lose my place and sometimes my temper, sad to say. That really wears me out.”
Rhonda said “How am I supposed to talk on the phone with a patient with all that racket? It’s so hard to hear what the patient is saying. How can I be effective with all that? I can’t remember who I’m even talking to sometimes!”
The truth is, we come into work because we love what we do. We just don’t like what the work does to us. We get ground down every day and no amount of POSITIVE THINKING can save you when you—PERSONALLY—are thrashed. And just because we start EVERY DAY DOWN IN THE MOUTH…lol… doesn’t mean we have to (figuratively) STAY there!
So, how about this, if we become what we think about all day long, what is it we become when we can’t hear ourselves think? Not gonna be your Super Bowl Performance is it? If you don’t care if you lose your hearing, well, alrighty then.
But why lose another day to a bad mood due to noise pollution?