Core Strengths – being honest and open

Catherine Rutland discusses the importance of being honest and discussing current events to bring about awareness and change.

Catherine Rutland discusses the importance of being honest and talking about current events, as it’s the only way awareness and change can happen.

Several reports have recently been published on very important topics. 

While these types of reports can gain some media attention when first printed (depending on the other news stories of the day), they then are often quietly forgotten about.

Three recent reports on women’s health, menopause and body image have caught my attention. These reports shouldn’t, like so many others, get thrown to the bottom of a pile. All three areas affect everyone in one way or another.

With that said, when practice teams are predominantly women, regardless of whether you feel they are relevant to you or not, they definitely will be!

Let’s talk about it

None of these areas are potentially easy to talk about, neither at home nor at work.

Generational differences as to how open and honest we are also play a role and are hard-wired into society. We won’t be able to change that easily, but we can be open to consideration of these subjects. 

It’s been great having my team heavily involved with other teams across the business to build content and policies in some of these health and wellbeing areas, and a whole area on our website to provide information to the public on aspects raised in these reports. 

As with so many areas of health and wellbeing, it’s only once we’re open that more conversations will happen. From preventive discussions to reiterating the importance of screening, and an understanding of how it can affect daily life. 

Reach out to your team

Within the workplace, some of these issues will affect parts of your team at any one time. It can be really hard to say anything, and there is a tendency to soldier on because you feel too embarrassed to speak up.

I suffered with endometriosis for years before it was diagnosed, and there were times when I could hardly move from my saddle seat with pain.

Although I might have told my nurse, I wasn’t going to admit it to my two older male principals. When I look back, I realise that if I had told them, they would have supported me. The barrier was me. 

I know I’m still terrible at being honest and still create that barrier all these years later. I should know better, yet it can be so hard. 

Honest conversations about our health and wellbeing are not always easy, yet these reports show the importance of doing so. 

Catch up with previous core strength columns:

Follow on Instagram to keep up with all the latest dental news and trends.

Get the most out of your membership by subscribing to Dentistry CPD
  • Access 600+ hours of verified CPD courses
  • Includes all GDC recommended topics
  • Powerful CPD tracking tools included
Register for webinar
Add to calendar