Dental Practice Solutions

Optimize your dental hygiene department by taking an integrated, team approach

  • Do you feel like you are working hard and your production is not increasing?
  • Do you feel like your hygiene department is under performing?
  • Is your hygiene department producing 25-30% of your total production?
  • Are hygienists in your office treating bloody prophys?
  • Does your hygiene department help enroll implant cases and high-end treatment?
  • Do you have one or more holes in your schedule daily?

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Dental Practice Solutions - Debbie Bittke

What Questions Will Enroll Your Patient Into the Type of Care They Desire?

By: Debbie Seidel-Bittke, RDH, BS

September 23, 2015

In last weeks blog I introduced the Smile Evaluation. (read last weeks blog here: BLOG ABOUT SMILE EVALUATION)

There is a simple form which will easily address various areas of your patients smile. Many times patients have never thought these simple changes could be made to their smile.

Once a patient shows you are talks about an areas in their mouth that they would like to change, your next question will sound something like this:

Hygienist: “Mrs Jones tell me exactly what it is that you don’t like about that tooth? 

Let her explain and then repeat back to Mrs Jones exactly how you can change that malaligned tooth. Use her words in your explanation of how you can change that for her.

What Mrs Jones told you is this:

Mrs Jones: “I don’t like how I look in pictures. I think I look terrible with that tooth sticking out and everytime I put lipstick on, once I smile, this tooth has lipstick all over it!”

As her hygienist who is actively listening, you will say something like this:

Hygienist: “Mrs Jones, I can totally understand how you may feel about that. It is so frustrating and embarrassing to always have people tell you that you have lipstick on your teeth. How would you feel I told you we have a way to easily fix that tooth?”

If your office offers Invisalign you have a perfect opportunity to show her how this malalignment can be fixed. Use her words when explaining.

This will be the same type of response for patients who tell you they have open spaces anywhere in their mouth. Acknowledge their response to smile evaluation questions by asking more questions regarding “the exact WHY” they don’t like something about their smile.”

Also back up your solution with not only cosmetic reasons they want to change their smile but the clinical reasons as well.

BTW: In looking at Mrs Jones’ smile in the above picture, you probably noticed that this smile evaluation has opened up a further conversation about various restorative and asethetic options, besides the malaligned tooth.

Just one simple question can lead so many patient care solutions! This leaves the door wide-open!

If you would like information about implementing the Smile Evaluation; what to ask your patients and a way to implement this, please download the Smile Evaluation below: Click on the picture now.