Having dedicated just over four decades to the dental profession, Louise Schigol is continuously proud of being committed to compassionate patient-centred care.
Crediting her passion for dentistry from childhood visits to the University of Toronto Faculty of Dentistry open houses with her family, Louise embarked on a journey in the industry. She graduated as a Certified Dental Assistant, and one year later, as a Registered Dental Hygienist from George Brown College in Toronto.
Louise worked in private practice for 29 years and was a part-time pre-clinical and clinical instructor in the Dental Hygiene and Dental Assisting programs at George Brown. After relocating to Saskatoon ten years ago, she continues to instruct, supervise, and evaluate dental students at the University of Saskatchewan College of Dentistry, while also providing dental hygiene services.
Louise believes that caring genuinely is essential for building trust and rapport with dental students and patients and is the key to becoming a successful educator and clinician. “The most rewarding aspect of being a dental educator is empowering students to embrace their profession and be valued as primary oral healthcare providers,” she said. “Caring about others helps us develop empathy, patience, and connection.”
Due to the intimate nature of oral care and the vulnerability and stress felt by many patients, Louise notes that being a dental hygienist comes with its challenges. “Rising to meet these challenges through patient-focused care positively impacts your own happiness and fulfillment,” she explained.
Her advice to other dental hygienists revealed her genuine passion for the field. “Always keep learning, strive for excellence, and continue to grow as a clinician,” she said. “Our goal is to enhance public awareness of the importance of oral health and deliver highly skilled oral healthcare for a successful outcome that will result in a satisfied patient.”