A New and Essential Dental CE Course
on the Art of Thinking Independently Together

“Understanding Cultural Diversity in Dentistry”

Every practicing dental health care professional adds an important element to providing culturally competent care. An individual’s cultural beliefs influence a patient’s health, illness and treatment decisions, either consciously or unconsciously. It is therefore important that the dental care provider recognize, respect and integrate patients’ cultural beliefs and practices into treatment of these patients. Dental practitioners who develop a basic understanding of their patient’s values, beliefs and customs are better able to provide culturally acceptable care.

There are three terms defining culturally competent care. Understanding these terms will assist you in developing competency in your relationship with your patients. Cultural awareness is the understanding and appreciation of differences between oneself and people of different countries or cultures, particularly their attitudes, values and external signs of diversity such as physical characteristics, clothing, music and art. Cultural sensitivity is the recognition that there are differences between cultures and groups including communication styles and the way they relate to one another. It means that dental providers need to examine their personal attitudes and not say anything offensive to someone from a cultural or ethnic background that is different from their own. This is an ongoing process. Cultural competence is when a provider views all patients as unique individuals and realizes that their experiences, beliefs, values, and language affect their perceptions of clinical service delivery, acceptance of a diagnosis and compliance. It is beneficial for dental health care providers to be open to cultural encounters and experiences in their lives in order to be comfortable treating the diverse cultural and ethnic groups in our country. Prejudices and bias can be minimized with increased knowledge and understanding.

Our dental continuing education online site, www.dentassist.com, has written this fundamental course that is designed to give you an overview and foundation to develop cultural competence in the delivery of dental health care. It is vital for dental professionals to think about their behavior and their communication style with regard to their own ideology, beliefs and life experiences. Your life experience plays an important role when interacting with people who are different from you.

The “Understanding Cultural Diversity in Dentistry” course will provide you with basic knowledge and understanding about the different cultures in order to develop closeness or empathy. It is important to recognize how our future, our production our livelihood is dependent upon the cooperation, contributions, kindness and trust of our patients. It is therefore our responsibility to have compassion and understanding for every one of them.

Check out the simplicity of dental CE online courses at www.dentassist.com.
Email any inquiries to ce@dentassist.com
Lisa Saiia, Director of dentassist.com




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