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J Dent Educ. 2014 Sep;78(9):1286-93.

Tackling stress management, addiction, and suicide prevention in a predoctoral dental curriculum.

Author information

1
Dr. Brondani is Assistant Professor, Department of Oral Health Sciences, Divisions of Preventive and Community Dentistry and of Prosthodontics and Dental Geriatrics, Faculty of Dentistry, University of British Columbia; Dhorea Ramanula is a support worker and suicide prevention activist; and Dr. Pattanaporn is Clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Oral Health Sciences, Division of Preventive and Community Dentistry, Faculty of Dentistry, University of British Columbia. brondani@dentistry.ubc.ca.
2
Dr. Brondani is Assistant Professor, Department of Oral Health Sciences, Divisions of Preventive and Community Dentistry and of Prosthodontics and Dental Geriatrics, Faculty of Dentistry, University of British Columbia; Dhorea Ramanula is a support worker and suicide prevention activist; and Dr. Pattanaporn is Clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Oral Health Sciences, Division of Preventive and Community Dentistry, Faculty of Dentistry, University of British Columbia.

Abstract

Health care professionals, particularly dentists, are subject to high levels of stress. Without proper stress management, problems related to mental health and addiction and, to a lesser extent, deliberate self-harm such as suicide may arise. There is a lack of information on teaching methodologies employed to discuss stress management and suicide prevention in dental education. The purpose of this article is to describe a University of British Columbia Faculty of Dentistry module designed to address stress management and suicide prevention, using students' personal reflections to illustrate the impact of the pedagogies used. The module enrolls more than 200 students per year and has sessions tailored to the discussion of stress management and suicide prevention. The pedagogies include standardized patients, invited guest lectures, in-class activities, video presentation, and self-reflections. More than 500 students' self-reflections collected over the past five years illustrate the seriousness of the issues discussed and the level of discomfort students experience when pondering such issues. The instructors hope to have increased students' awareness of the stressors in their profession. Further studies are needed to unravel the extent to which such pedagogy influences a balanced practice of dentistry.

KEYWORDS:

addiction; dental education; dental students; stress; stress management; suicide; teaching methodology

PMID:
25179925
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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