Updated: Mar 21, 2020
I had first reached out to Claire to introduce Diamond Dental Staff after following her across her Instagram page where she often posts great content covering all things; Oral Health, Teeth Whitening and Facial Aesthetics. We really enjoy seeing the before and after images, blog posts and testimonials that are shared over at @clairelouiseonline.
It was clear to me that Claire was an exceptionally passionate Dental Hygienist and certainly a Dental Professional that I would love to work with in any way. We had a lovely telephone call where we introduced ourselves properly and geeked out over our passion in Dentistry and how important it is to empower and inspire others.
Claire had shared some of her experience with me and her journey to qualifying as a Dental Hygienist and it left me feeling inspired and also, very proud of her. I always dreamed of becoming a DH&T but my path led me in a different direction, so I was grateful that Claire took the time to share her journey with me.
Diamond Dental Staff had been invited to Kings College Hospital and The Eastman Hospital to speak with the soon to be qualified Dental Hygienists & Therapists and Claire had very kindly agreed to share her top tips with us, which was well received and offered some real inspiration to the students.
We were very happy to receive a nomination for Claire and are very proud to announce her as our 2019 Recognition Award winner for Diamond Dental Staff’s ‘Best Dental Hygienist’ category. A very well deserved win! Below is our interview following Claire's win.
1) Why did you start a career in Dentistry?
I fell into dentistry when looking for a career change while I was serving in the army. Actually saying I ‘fell into it’ is maybe a bit hard on myself really, because once I decided that dental hygiene was the career for me I was completely focused on making it a reality and worked really hard to make it happen. I knew I wanted a medical career and fell in love with the concept of improving the nations oral health. I am so passionate about my profession, I think hygienists play a vital role in preventative dentistry.
2) What inspires you to continue up-skilling as a clinician?
I don’t know if it is something that has always been within me or whether it derived from being in the army, but I never want to coast or sit still in my career. I feel it’s important to always strive to better myself and better my skills. It’s best for me and best for my patients. I’m always looking for the next thing that will improve me as a person and as a hygienist. I also want to push the boundaries of the profession, reach new limits and I am always seeking new ways to get messages across to patients.
3) Who has been a positive influence or personal inspiration in your career?
A huge influence over my career as it is now is Michaela O’Neill. She gives me opportunity and advice and I value her opinion greatly. In terms of article writing I am motivated and inspired by a wonderful lady called Michelle Hurd. There are so many people I could write under this question, colleagues and peers that push me everyday. I think having career mentors and inspiration is an essential part of running a business. Surrounding yourself with these people helps you grow and improve.
4) What has been the best advice that you have received?
The best thing I have ever been told is, ‘there is opportunity in every conversation’. I’ve found networking with people inside and even outside of my industry has helped my business and my career. I now live by that mantra, because I have had so many opportunities in conversation and in reaching out to people. Sometimes it may come to you, sometimes you have to go out and create it yourself.... but ultimately it starts with conversation.
Where do you see yourself in the next 3 years?
I want to keep doing my part to push the profession and help other hygienists feel motivated to do the same. The more of us making our own ripples the bigger the wave we will create. I see myself teaching more and of course writing more, it’s a huge passion of mine. I don’t know where I am finding the time for these things, but I’ll make it happen. I already write some monthly columns for the FMC, one of which is aimed at hygienists every month. I like to spread the word of the hygienist so people can see our value and know how to best utilise our skills. So I guess the questions is not so much where I see myself in 3 years, it’s more where I see the profession. I just hope in the next 3 years I’ve had a part to play in its progression.
We would like to thank Claire for taking the time to answer our interview questions and hope that like myself, you find some inspiration and empowerment from her journey so far.
Claire is a multi-award winning Dental Hygienist, she is also an Ambassador for The British Society of Dental Hygienists and Therapists as well as an Ambassador for Boutique Whitening and a Key Opinion Leader for Oral B
For more information and to keep up to date with what Claire is up to, you can visit Claire’s website here: https://www.clairelouiseonline.co.uk/
or visit her YouTube Channel here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1nAZsxZNn_4
Written by Emma Anastasi
Dental Nurse & Managing Director of Diamond Dental Staff Ltd