What do people want from their dentist?

| June 12, 2009

The first thing I notice when I meet someone for the first time is their smile.  Perhaps it’s because I’m married to a dentist, I’ve been working in a dental office for 5 years, or because I had a lot of work done on my smile (braces twice, jaw surgery) before I even became eligible for my “special dental benefits plan”.  I guess having a nice smile has always been important to me.  It’s the one thing that is always with me no matter where I go.

But is that what the general public wants?  I struggle with what people want from their dentist in writing these blog posts.

  • Do they just want their teeth cleaned and rush out the door.  That’s cool, because at least their clean and they are taking care of things.
  • Do they believe they can wait until it hurts if the dentist detects cavities or gum disease?
  • Why don’t more people floss?  It only takes a minute a day and it does so much good.
  • Do they believe that it’s more important to have their morning Starbucks than to have to pay out of pocket for a professional dental cleaning or $30 copay for a filling?
  • Do they really believe that their dental insurance should cover more, even though their premium is $10 per month?  (compared to $100s for medical)
  • Do they want whitening that works with a little effort on their part for less than $100?
  • Are they skeptical as to whether the Smile Makeover will really look as good as the mocked up “after” picture?
  • Do they want their dentist to say “you know your teeth are looking a little yellow, we could really brighten them up for as little as $89 with a take home whitening kit”  Or is that insulting to the patient?  Because just about everyone over 30 could make a fairly significant difference in their smile, with a little whitening.
  • What do people want from their dentist?
  • Let’s start the conversation.  Would love to hear your comments here on this post.