2019 Award Winner- Karol Aldrich
We're so excited to get to know Karol Aldrich, RDH, a little bit better through interviewing her! She is an amazing dental hygienist and person who definitely deserved to win the 2019 Dedicated Service award for all her amazing work in public health and school based programs. Read on to learn a bit more about her history as an RDH, what inspired her, and something funny from her career:
How long have you been a dental hygienist?
I graduated from the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center in 1990. Denver Colorado.
Where do you work now?
Over the years I have had the benefit of working in Education, Practice and Public Health. Last year, I decided to focus primarily on Public Health where I can continue to utilize my Spanish. Here, the work is more challenging because there is a much greater need and with that comes greater reward.
What is your favorite part of dental hygiene?
My favorite part of Dental Hygiene is working with people who have had little or no dental care and helping them to understand the importance of optimal oral health for themselves and their families. I am able to assist them in making the life changes necessary to get and maintain ideal health. Helping people see that an ounce of prevention truly is worth far more than a pound of cure.
What inspired you to become a dental hygienist?
My Mom inspired me. She stressed the importance of an education, skill and a career. That not only as women, but as individuals, we need to be independent and self-sufficient “just in case” life didn’t work out the way we had planned.
What continues to inspire me? My passion and desire to help get things done. My many colleagues and friends who have encouraged, informed and guided me along the way; and of course, my patients’ and their families who trust in me day after day, year after year with their care.
Any funny stories from practice?
As a young teenager, I gave a great deal of thought towards a potential career early on. In High School, I did a fair amount of research, spoke with neighbors, sought out dental professionals and interviewed them asking every question that popped into my head, and then asked more. I was told of the pros and cons of the job and I was sure that this was the career for me. Not until I was well into the program did, I realize a few things that no one ever mentioned:
1-Not everyone brushes their teeth.
2-I really don’t like saliva.