|The two biggest practice builders are. . .|
Most of the Dental publications we read contain articles on Practice Management, acquiring and attracting new patients, the latest techniques or procedures and the latest in instrumentation and equipment. These are all positive and because of these new advances have provided the capability to produce more efficient and esthetic procedures.The main question is what really builds and develops a practice assuming the dentist has these advances at his/her disposal?
It is interesting that most people avoid dentists out of fear, apprehension and anxiety, in addition to cost. Most dentists work extremely hard in attempting to provide a comfortable and pleasant experience for their patients, many times to their own detriment.
Consider this-The two biggest practice builders are:
1. Patient communication and management
2. Comfortable anesthetic.
Patient Communication begins with the Dentist relating to his/her staff and developing a staff that is pleasant, motivated, caring, compassionate and professional. When a patient calls or walks into the office, how does the staff relate to them? When you are dealing with your staff, how do you communicate? When patients are brought back for procedures, is the staff helpful and do they help create a relaxed and comfortable environment? When you speak to the patient, do you relate to their concerns and do you explain in patient terms what is going to be done and answer any questions they may have? When the procedures are completed do you explain possible outcomes in terms of sensitivity, pain or others? Is the office compassionate to the patients concerns should they call postoperatively?
Comfortable anesthetic areas are such individual things. Many Dentists use different techniques and procedures but the important thing is to develop a technique that works. Do you use topical anesthetic after drying the injection site? (Yeah- a lot of dentists say you don’t need it- but it does work and it makes a difference to patients). Do you take time dispensing the anesthetic solution-40 plus seconds per carpule? (Yeah- that’s too long and I have a busy schedule-but it does make a difference). Do you wait a reasonable length of time to make sure the patient is comfortable and check that they are? ( Yeah but I know they will let me know-not always but they sure will tell their friends and family) An extra five minutes or more giving a comfortable anesthetic and making sure it has been effective is critical.