Webinar: Dentists can play a role in blunting opioid epidemic

Dr. Parsons
Dr. Kimberly

Two past presidents of the Ohio Dental Association are leading a free webinar that features the positive role dentists can play to help mitigate the opioid crisis, as well as a discussion of the relationship between substance use and addiction and treatments available for acute pain.

Sharon Parsons, D.D.S., along with David Kimberly, D.D.S., M.D, are the presenters of Opioids, Dentistry and Addiction: The Dentist’s Role in Treating Pain , which streams live Oct. 21 from noon-1 p.m.

Dr. Parsons, who owns a group practice in Columbus, Ohio, is a recipient of the Lucy Hobbs Humanitarian Award. Her younger son Michael practices with her. After her son Sean died of an opioid overdose in 2015, she decided to educate others about opioid prescribing and addiction.

“After experiencing a tragedy in my family, I realized that while I had a good pharmacology education, I had learned little to nothing about addiction,” Dr. Parsons said. “The more I learned, the more I realized that we, as dentists, had unwittingly been a part of the problem. I needed to help make us part of the solution instead.”

Dr. Kimberly is an oral surgeon in private practice in Akron. As well as a past president of the Ohio Dental Association, he is past chair of the Akron Dental Society, past chair of the Ohio Dental Association’s Council on Dental Care Programs and Dental Practice and the ethics subcommittee. He is a member of the American College of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, International College of Dentists and American College of Surgeons.

“While we have made substantial progress towards making our profession practically painless, dentistry is still surgery,” Dr. Kimberly said. “Our understanding of pain relief has progressed tremendously over the last decade even as the opioid crisis has continued to plague our nation. Dentists have taken a major role in changing the way we treat acute pain and Dr. Parsons and I are excited to share what we have learned.”

One hour of continuing education credit is available.

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