Twice as Nice Partnership
Portion of proceeds support families affected by childhood cancer
Michelle Strange: A Tale of Two Hygienists presents this week’s TIPisode: quick and easy tips to keep you up to date and presented by the experts in the profession. Now, get ready for your unofficial TIPisode.
Andrew Johnston: Welcome, everyone, to a special bonus TIPisode. We don’t normally have two TIPisodes in one week, but when we heard this story that we just had to make room for this. So we’re really excited to bring you this today. My name is Andrew. I’m one of the co-hosts of A Tale of Two Hygienists. You may or may not recognize my voice. And I am joined today by Carrie and Debora.
Debora is Deb Carrier of Twice as Nice Fame [sounds like]. Also — by the way, a regular on the show. But also Episode number 15. We just looked it up again.
Debora Carrier: [Laughing].
Andrew Johnston: Debora’s been with us for so long with A Tale of Two Hygienists, so she’ll be on in a few minutes.
But Carrie is new to the show, and so I wanted to bring her on and introduce you all to her. So hi, Carrie, first of all. Hi.
Carrie Wucinich: Hello. Thank you for having me.
Andrew Johnston: How’s it going? Absolutely.
Can you let our audience know a little bit about your background? Where are you coming from?
Carrie Wucinich: Well, I am a dental hygienist. I’ve been in the dental industry for almost 20 years, which is so hard to believe. I’ve worked in pediatric dental offices, which is like my favorite place to be, which many hygienists — like, you couldn’t pay them to be in there [laughing], but I love kids. I love working with kids. They just light me up.
In 2008, I graduated from dental hygiene school, and I’ve been practicing since then. I did take a break when I had my son and my daughter, so that’s cool. I’ve been — now I’m a mom, so I get all the mom struggles that every mom told me about. So, um, yeah. I’ve kind of experienced it all, so now I’m here trying to give back and help where I can.
Andrew Johnston: I love it. I love it.
So — and I know that you came prepared for this TIPisode with a tip for our audience. What tip do you have for them?
Carrie Wucinich: So, through my journey, I would have to say my biggest tip would to be to [sic] find an educational tool to help teach our patients, our little patients the importance of brushing and flossing and taking care of their teeth and giving them something to look at so they can understand what we’re talking about all the time, you know, where we talk about the sugar bugs, like what sugar bugs look like, where do they come from, why are they there, and how can we get them off to keep their teeth nice and healthy.
Andrew Johnston: I feel like there’s a back story, though, behind that tip.
Carrie Wucinich: Well, one of them is I’m a mom [laughing], so.
Andrew Johnston: [Laughing].
Carrie Wucinich: My son, when he was like, what? Two years old? He was refusing to brush his teeth, so I knew that I had to write this book, which I wrote a children’s book called Where the Sugar Bugs Live. And he just was refusing to brush his teeth. He didn’t want to. So, once my book was published and I read it to him, it was a complete game-changer. He got to see what sugar bugs look like and what they do to his teeth, and he was running to the bathroom to brush his teeth.
It’s changed the game for us because we no longer struggle with that, which I know for a fact working with kids in pediatric dental offices parents would cry to me, moms especially, that they didn’t know what else to do because their kids were throwing tantrums and refusing to brush, so I was just like, “I have to do this to help parents because now I know what it’s like.” [Laughing].
Andrew Johnston: Oh, absolutely. I think that the children — the way we learn as adults and the way children learn is completely different, right? I think they need a lot of visuals. They need a lot of extra help in understanding concepts that are completely foreign to them.
Carrie Wucinich: Yes.
Andrew Johnston: It’s a whole — it’s not even — it’s past a brand-new language. It’s more than that. And so I love that you did that.
Carrie Wucinich: Thank you.
Andrew Johnston: Now, I know that there’s a partnership here with you and Debora, and I would love for you guys to explain that to our audience a little bit.
Carrie Wucinich: So I met Debora when she first started her company, and I loved her to death. So we’ve always helped each other out through the years, which is amazing. And she’s taught me so much about the industry and how we can all lift each other up. So, when I sent her a book, she was one of the first people I sent my book to, she called me and said, “Carrie, this is awesome. Let’s take it to another level.”
So she made it possible that the sugar bugs are coming alive, and now they’re available on scrub caps for anybody in the dental or medical profession to wear to protect them and open up the conversation about sugar bugs.
So we have the surgical caps. We also have compression socks that anybody can wear to have fun and be safe.
Andrew Johnston: Debora, do you mind? I love looking at your smile. You’re just so beaming with pride about what accomplishments Carrie’s done. Tell me more about it from your perspective what you’ve been noticing about this journey with her.
Debora Carrier: Well, I’ve mentored a lot of hygienists over the years and helped hold their hand through things, but the reason I’m beaming is because from the second Carrie had this book idea and I connected with her, she said, “I don’t know what to do, Debora.” And I said, “Well, this is what we have to do. Bumb, bumb, bumb, bumb, bumb.” And she’s looking at me like, “Okay. But I don’t know how to do that.” And I said, “Just hang on.”
And this was back in the fall, and I know she — and I said, “But, you know, we have to be — it has to be the right time.” And I know she was getting a little frustrated with me, and I said, “Just hang on.” And, over the holidays, she’s like, “Debora, I’m not selling any books. What are we doing.” And I said, “Just hang on. I know how we’re going to play this out.”
And so, once January hit, I called her, and I said, “Okay. Get your pen ready because here we go.” And I just reeled off a million different people she had to get in touch with, a million different things that she needed to do, and she was scared to death, and she’s like, “I’m so uncomfortable.” I’m like, “Just jump in.”
And I — from a Monday morning phone call with somebody — and I’ve been on all the phone calls with her. From the Monday morning first phone call where she was stumbling over her words until Friday afternoon, she was like a different person. I was, like — I’m so proud of her. She’s just done an amazing job. She grew so much in just a week, and all it was was her confidence. You know, she just had to gain that confidence. And, once she saw what could happen, then the doors are just flying open since then. So I am so proud of her. I’m just amazingly proud of her.
Andrew Johnston: Wow.
Carrie Wucinich: And I’m so thankful for you. So it’s a win-win for the both of us.
Andrew Johnston: I think that there’s a second tip, like, and underlying tip for this TIPisode is find a Debora Carrier —
Debora Carrier: [Laughing].
Carrie Wucinich: Yes.
Andrew Johnston: — to be in your corner if you ever need anything.
Debora Carrier: Well, there are so many peop — total — yeah.
Andrew Johnston: I mean, there’s real power in mentorship and training, yeah.
Debora Carrier: But there were so many people who helped me when I first started. And, you know, it was just a tip here or a hand there or support here. And, you know, now I’m in a position where I can do that for other people. And a lot of people come to me and ask me for help, but it’s — I can give out the advice, but you got to take it and run with it, and that’s what Carrie — Carrie’s done extremely well.
Carrie Wucinich: Mm-hmm. Thank you.
And you know what’s so cool? I am telling you that I have learned so much in this industry. And like I was telling Andrew earlier is that we are, like, the most loving group ever, and we all just want to help each other out in any way that we can. And I know that one day I’m going to do the same thing for somebody else because it’s like we all want each other — we want to succeed, and we want to help everybody succeed. And that’s my motto is, like, “Together we can make a difference.” And that’s what we’re doing, so it’s so cool to see that. It just makes me happy every single day.
Another amazing aspect about what we’re doing is a portion of the proceeds will be going back to children who are fighting cancer and their families. So, in my journey in life when my son was four months old, I met a woman who just had lost her son to cancer, and I was completely devastated. Like, I could not imagine after just having my son losing him.
So, that night, I swore I was going to do whatever I could to help these families and try to help moms who are going through something like this find happiness in any way that I could try to, like, take the stress of paying an electric bill or giving their child toys to play with to light them up for one moment. So that is a huge mission that I have also.
And I knew — when I wrote this book, I reached out to Mary who is now my really good friend, and I said, “Mary, I want to give a portion of the proceeds from this book back to childhood cancer.” And she was just obviously so grateful, and she’s like, “Carrie that is so sweet. I’m so thankful for you and this that and the other.” She said, “You have no idea how much this could potentially help families, you know, all over the place.”
And so that is one aspect of my book that it holds a special place in my heart. And I know because of the industry we all love helping and giving back. It’s going to give so many people the opportunity to give back to these kids and their families who are fighting so hard to be happy and keep going each day.
I have a website. It’s yellowribbonbooks.com. And my book — our bundle package is called The Sugar Bugs Collection is on there as well. You can go to Twice as Nice Uniforms as well. So there are three ways that you can find all of the things that we’re doing to help people in more ways than one.
Andrew Johnston: Awesome.
Well, thank you Debora. Thank you, Carrie.
Carrie Wucinich: Thank you.
Andrew Johnston: I really appreciate you being on.
Debora Carrier: Thank you.
Andrew Johnston: Have a great night.
Carrie Wucinich: Thank you so much.
Michelle Strange: We hope you enjoyed this week’s TIPisode. Be sure to reach out to our guest experts and let them know how helpful their tips were. Follow A Tale of Two Hygienists on Facebook, Instagram, and head over to ataleoftwohygienists.com and subscribe to our newsletter. You can also email us at [email protected], and keep listening for more awesome content from your unofficial dental hygiene podcast.