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November 5, 2010 | dentalproductsreport.com Esthetic dentistry is one of the most desired services the dental profession has to offer patients. But only a fraction of potential cosmetic cases are being done. But you can increase patient awareness and acceptance of cosmetic dentistry cases. Here’s how:
November 5, 2010 | dentalproductsreport.com
Esthetic dentistry is one of the most desired services the dental profession has to offer patients. But only a fraction of potential cosmetic cases are being done. But you can increase patient awareness and acceptance of cosmetic dentistry cases. Here’s how:
1. Decide if you are comfortable promoting cosmetic dentistry. If you aren’t, don’t worry, you don’t have to “sell” anything. Instead look around your office as if you were a new patient coming in for the first time. What message is your reception area conveying? Do you have effective cosmetic dentistry marketing tools in place?
2. Marketing materials alone won’t create patient demand. Historically dentists rely too heavily on that. The key is with your team members-have them create a buzz by informing, power educating and motivating patients about recent advances in technology that can instantly transform their smile.
3. Decide if you are satisfied with how “natural” your veneers look. If they don’t look beautiful your team cannot sincerely promote it. Years ago I developed the 60 Second Chairside Smile Preview System-to accurately determine if a patient would be a good candidate for veneers. Yes, you can use computer imaging but it is not as effective. Develop your own mock-up technique and you will immediately see an increase in patient interest and demand for cosmetic dentistry.
4. Determine if you are in the “correct” neighborhood to attract cosmetic cases. If you think not, don’t worry, whatever neighborhood you are in people universally want better smiles. Don’t fall victim to the “it won’t work in my neighborhood” negative thinking. Build a positive mindset and make it happen. Cosmetic dentistry is desired in all neighborhoods.
5. Dentists typically don’t like to advertise for cosmetic cases. The good news is if you don’t want to you don’t have to. There is ample opportunity right in your office-with your own patient population. If you look for it I can guarantee you will find it. Here’s how. Start by having every new and recall patient fill out a personalized smile analysis-however, there is an art and science to a good smile analysis form that is often overlooked (e-mail me at email@example.com or call 216-256-4599 and I will send you a copy of the one I use). This form will help your team understand what patients “want”-subtle or obvious-not just what they “need.” Remember-cosmetic dentistry is want driven.
6. Are you getting sincere “buy-in” from your team members about cosmetic dentistry? This is not always easy to do. But with proper mentorship it can and will happen. Here’s how to do it. Have each team member fill out my Smile Analysis Form. by filling out that form, most offices find that each team member has at least one cosmetic dental problem. It may be a subtle problem, but that is okay because it is representative of what exists with many of your patients of record. Next, do the appropriate cosmetic dentistry service (complimentary of course) to solve your team members problem. Genuine “buy-in” will no longer be an issue because your team member has personally experienced your cosmetic services. This builds sincerity and is essential to creating a thriving cosmetic dentistry practice.
7. Are you still doing porcelain veneers? It’s a great service and has its place-but the lab bill can make this too expensive for many patients to afford in today’s economy. Instead, combine 1-2 chairside composite veneers with in-office whitening and you will have more patients saying YES to cosmetic dentistry. Over the past several years I developed a 30 minute in-office veneer that eliminates all of the problems I faced with conventional composite veneers. We all love home runs with porcelain veneers but base hits with advanced composite veneers and in-office whitening adds up to winning games. Also, remember to use patient financing programs as well. There are good ones out there.
8. Is cosmetic dentistry fun and exciting for you and your team? There are several “technical simplification” procedures I have been using for years that makes doing chairside veneers easy, prevents career burn-out and eliminates the angst associated with technique sensitive cosmetic procedures. Because of these simplified techniques, I’m excited about going to the office every day-and you should be, too. If you don’t have simplified technique systems in place contact me and I will be glad to give you some suggestions. It makes a world of a difference.
9. Are you focusing on learning but find that you are not doing as much cosmetic cases as you want? Certainly take CE courses but eventually you have to go to bat and hit some balls. Have a team member who is your spark plug (or hire a team coach who is experienced in cosmetic dentistry) help you fine tune your skills. Don’t wait-procrastination doesn’t work.
10. Are you one of the country’s cosmetic dentistry super stars? Don’t worry, most of us aren’t. However you already know what it takes. Just make a number of changes-start by using the above suggestions and fine tune how you inform, power educate and motivate. You will see immediate results, which will be very gratifying.
Okay, now that you have the Rx for breaking down the barriers-Go For It! Have a team meeting this week and then write down a list of action steps and put them to work. In just a short period of time you will have a thriving cosmetic practice. Today cosmetic dentistry provides your patients with affordable, non-invasive, life changing procedures-are you making your patients aware of its benefits? Are your team members sincere and enthusiastic when talking with patients about your experience and expertise in this field? If not, why wait for tomorrow when you can start making positive changes today!
Dr. Harvey Silverman has been inventing simplified cosmetic dentistry systems and coaching dentists/team members on how to expand their cosmetic dentistry practice since 1984. Dr. Silverman was involved in developing the original porcelain veneer system in 1983, pioneering Extreme MakeOvers in 1987, opening the country’s first dental spa in 1988, patenting one of the first OTC tooth whiteners in 1989 and developing numerous tooth whiteners and same day veneer technologies since 1990. If you want to do more cosmetic dentistry or want more information about the Silverman Institute Of Cosmetic Dentistry’s 14 Day Cosmetic Transformation Program or on the Institute’s Program on How To Double Your Cosmetic Dentistry Practice, please contact Dr. Silverman at 216-256-4599 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.