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Buyer’s Guide - Comparing the Top Dental Supply Companies

Comparing the top dental supply companies

 

Every Dental Practice may be unique, but all share the same challenge: Finding the right dental supplies at the right prices. A savvy dental practitioner knows that this will always be an evolving process.

Modern practices have the benefits of shopping online, but this again comes with its own challenge: With so many options – how do I know where to shop?

To help you here, we've put together this list of some of the best places to shop. We compare the strengths and weaknesses of each, in order to help you find the right match.

With this overview, you can cut out some of the legwork of finding and comparing the best dental vendors.

Noble Dental Supplies

Noble Dental Supplies has been in the game for a long time – over 40 years – and in more recent years, with the move they became one of the biggest online dental supplier, they have always maintained the same company ethos. Their focus is on customer service, and that is what sets Noble Dental Supplies apart.

That means consistently and diligently helping our clients save money, and finding the high quality dental products and best solutions to satisfy dental businesses unique needs.

Unique Benefits:

What is unique about us is our care. We offer to review what you're currently buying, by studying your invoices and give you a detailed comparison, at no charge to you. We also offer free shipping on orders above $500.

What Makes Us Stand Out?

While some competitors focus on a mass marketplace approach, and while others use aggressive marketing tactics, Noble cuts a different path. We focus on building relationships that are mutually beneficial while saving you money at the same time.

Our decades of experience in sourcing gives us leverage, so we are able to put the Dental Practice itself in focus. Noble's approach is that it's the small details that matter – like ensuring each package is neatly packed, complete, and delivered on time, every time. Nurturing these relationships is what has made the business last.

This approach has made Noble the Top East Coast Dental Supply Company. Their flagship brand is MARK3, and they stock a huge range of supply products and basic equipment, consistently beating the prices of big-name brands by 30-50%.

Henry Schein Dental Supplier

This is a big company, listed on the Fortune 500, and it casts a long shadow. The Company's sales reportedly reached $10.1 billion in 2020, and Henry Schein became a public company in 1995. They’re also obviously a big name, with a big reputation, and that comes with both its pros and its cons.

Unique Benefits:

Henry Schein operates a centralized and automated distribution center, with a selection of more than 120,000 branded products. They have technological muscle, and this is great for surgical instruments, as well as for the sale and service of large equipment. They have few peers in that niche.

What Makes them Stand Out?

With Almost 20,000 employees, Henry Schein is stable and diverse. They carry 60,000 products, and more in different areas of business, and the company uses a force of motivated and trained sales representatives. They have multiple warehouses, both in the US and globally, and can usually deliver most products within one day.

Their distribution machine is well-oiled and follows the Amazon model. Unfortunately, all these benefits come at a cost, which drives up their retail prices. Keep in mind that they are a public company, and so have to answer to shareholders.

Safco  Dental Supplier

This company has a legacy similar to Noble Dental Supplies. It was founded in 1945 by Harold Saffir and later continued by his progeny. They carry a fairly large range of between 20,000 - 40,000 products, including all the major brands.

Unique Benefits:

Safco uses the Catalog model, with no aggressive sales representatives. The company is now starting to focus on online ordering, offering over 18,000 inventory items featured on their website, and in their printed catalog that has over 500-pages.

What Makes them Stand out?

Since Safco is a privately owned company, they are able to keep their prices slightly lower than Schein. They also have a house brand, and offer free shipping for orders over $100.

Save 30% to 50% on supplies

NET32  Dental Supplier

Here we have a totally different approach to the business. Net32 is basically a big marketplace, where various vendors compete on similar ranges of products. It’s an attractive idea, and one that aligns with the democratic idea of a free and open market, but it also has its drawbacks.

Unique Benefits:

The big drawcard here is competition. Vendors that supply Net32 must compete with price and quality in an open forum, and they are subject to reviews from clients. There are obvious benefits to this approach.

What Makes them Stand Out?

Because it is basically an open marketplace, the central company cannot always guarantee exceptional service. As great as a competitive market is for prices, it also suffers from erratic customer service, decentralized systems, and the hassle that Dentists get invoices from many different vendors. It’s a private company, and there are no sales representatives.

Darby  Dental Supplier

Darby dental supplier is 50% owned by Schein Dental, and they follow the same model as the giant. Being partly independent, they are able to offer slightly lower prices. They carry a robust range of around 40,000 products on their online portal and stocked in a number of distribution hubs scattered across the country.

Unique Benefits:

The Darby sales representatives are highly motivated, and their enterprise has doubled in five years, a testament to the effectiveness of their sales machine, to the point of aggressive selling. 

What Makes them Stand Out?

Darby carries and stocks all the major, well-known Dental brands, and it is a private company, although affiliated with Schein. That means it also benefits from some of the same heavyweight muscle, and shares the protection of its big brother - but again - with similar drawbacks. Although the outbound calling representatives are eager for business, their automated supply model in the background may be vulnerable to faults that the personal care of smaller supply companies can overcome. 

Scotts Dental  Dental Supplier

A relative newcomer to the playing field is Scott Bigler, the founder of Scotts Dental, who started the company in 2002. Competing as a small fish among the big fish means having to offer more value in terms of price and service, and this is where Scotts finds their niche. Their range includes many of the major lines but excludes three big names: 3M, Dentsply, and Kerr.

Unique Benefits:

The biggest drawcard here is their savings catalog. On certain Dental products, their prices are aggressively slashed in order to maintain their slice of the dental market. Scotts is especially known for its range of handpieces and stainless steel instruments. They also offer free shipping for orders above $500. 

What Makes them Stand Out?

Scott’s Dental Supply offers a 300-page quarterly catalog, and they have staked out the West Coast as their territory for now - becoming a Top Contender in this area. Carving out this niche, the private company has grown to around $17Million in sales, which is noteworthy, considering their sales strategy focuses on inbound, rather than outbound calls.

In Conclusion…

The list above covers the most significant Dental Supply Companies out there, competing for your business. 

Each one has its own peculiarities, and its own plus and minus points. In the end, it is a question of balancing your time and money. 

Some companies offer the potential for savings, but create hassles for you in other ways, whereas the big fish have all the bells and whistles, but can’t compete on cost. Feel free to contact us to help you make an informed comparison, based on your unique buying needs, and let us prove to you the savings and benefits that are possible.



Why buy MARK3 5% Sodium Fluoride Varnish

 

Mark3 Varnish 5%

The effectiveness of dental fluoride varnish treatments in the prevention of dental decay and dentine hypersensitivity is widely recognized. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and various other organizations recognize fluoride varnish treatment as effective.

As per the CDC, fluoridation of municipal water is believed to be among the best effective methods for combating tooth decay. [1] Several fluoride treatments are available that can be performed in the dental clinic to both children and adults. 

The American Dental Association (ADA) identifies sodium fluoride (NaF) 5% or fluoride varnish 2.26% treatment as effective therapies for caries prevention, provided that they have performed a minimum of two times every year to kids up to the age of 18. [2] Other recommendations of NaF varnishes include prevention of root caries in adults by performing the procedure twice a year at a minimum. Thus, fluoride varnishes are helpful for all age groups, particularly adolescents as well as people potentially at high risk of caries. [3] 

So, what makes the best kind of varnish, and how are they different from one another? 

With an assortment of fluoride varnishes available in the market, it can be challenging to decide which brand and product to use. There is more to handling characteristics and patient acceptability that makes one an exclusive varnish. Unique ingredients and properties at an affordable price allow varnish to stand out from the rest.

At present, there aren’t enough studies supporting the clinical merits or those that provide a comparison of the types of professional fluoride therapies. What’s known is, ‘the greater the frequency and time period of teeth contact with fluoride, the greater the success rate of the therapy. When evaluating the effects of fluoride carriers, for example, varnish, toothpaste, and fluoride rinse, there isn't enough high-quality evidence proving the benefits of a particular delivery system. [4] Hence, it is inquisitive why a varnish should be used, and which type of varnish would be the best.

MARK3 5% Sodium Fluoride Varnish

Features and Benefits of MARK3

Comparison with other varnishes

Why choose MARK3 5% Fluoride Varnish?

Frequently Asked Questions

References

Features and Benefits of MARK3

MARK3 5% Sodium Fluoride Varnish is unique in that it supplies the ideal volume of fluoride to the teeth in an application as quick as 60 seconds. It comes as a resin-based formula that offers a powerful desensitizing action, during the application on the surfaces of enamel and dentin. Its unique formulation contains xylitol which prevents tooth decay and Tricalcium Phosphate that potentially helps in remineralization of the teeth while reducing hypersensitivity. MARK3 5% NaF Varnish comes with a unit dose packaging, which makes its use and application ultra-convenient for any dental setting.

Comparison with other varnishes

Although the general formulation of varnished is similar, not all products are equal and contain different types and amounts of ingredients which give them diverse properties. The following are the features of the most popular varnish in the market.

Mark3 is a perfect alternative to these brands: 

  • 3m ESPE Varnish

  • Durashield by Sultan Healthcare

  • Safco Fluride Varnish 

  • Nupro WhiteVarnish

  • Kolorz Clearshield by DMG America

  • Ultraclear by WaterPik

Quick and short-range fluoride release 

Most products do provide a rapid release of fluoride in as low as the first 2 hours, making them good for patients who are not compliant with post-op instructions. However, most of them offer only short-range fluoride exposure to the teeth. This makes them less recognizable and less successful in retaining tooth remineralization. 

Shellac-based varnishes

Several varnished in the market comprise of food-grade shellac, instead of tree resin. This allows them to dry thin but does not allow a great fluoride adherence to the teeth. 

Less fluoride concentration

Some products only contain 2.5% sodium fluoride, claiming it to be the saturation point of fluoride release. On the other hand, MARK2’s Sodium Fluoride Varnish contains 5% NaF, allowing it to work at its maximum potential. 

Inadequate viscosity and tint

Some varnishes are seen to have a tint. This may be said to deliver better visualization but is not great in terms of esthetics as it leaves a noticeable tinted layer over the teeth. Other products either have too thin or thick consistencies. This makes them too viscous or too thin to slump away when applied, making their manipulation and application on teeth difficult.

Milk protein-based varnishes

While delivering 5% NaF, certain varnishes come with Recaldent (CPP-ACP), which is a combination of casein phosphopeptide (CPP) and amorphous calcium phosphate (ACP). Milk contains the casein peptide naturally and can bind to the teeth, mucosa, as well as a biofilm. Although this may allow ACP stabilization until it contacts the teeth for recalcification, these varnishes are not suitable for use on patients having milk protein allergy. [6]

Why choose MARK3 5% Fluoride Varnish?

According to a hygienist, Cheri Lindstrom, patients quite often deny fluoride varnish treatment due to its unpleasant taste or poor consistency. Thus, Lindstrom was looking for a product that could help her deliver fluoride benefits to her patients. For better patient comfort, clinicians prefer fluoride varnish products that are quick and convenient to apply with a better texture and taste. It was this when Lindstrom considered using MARK3’s 5% Sodium Fluoride Varnish. 

The feedback from patients after the application of the varnish was overwhelmingly and positive. Its caramel flavor and adequate consistency gave patients a favorable taste without being bulky on the surfaces of the teeth. MARK3 fluoride varnish is also available in spearmint and bubble gum flavors to match patient preference. It also consists of tricalcium phosphate (TCP) that helps prevent caries while promoting tooth remineralization. This is a resin-based formula that exhibits desensitization of enamel and dentine after application. What’s more? It dries to an esthetically pleasing, natural enamel color.

All in all, MARK3 has the following benefits:

  • TCP helps prevent caries while promoting remineralization.

  • Ease of application in 0.4mL unit doses in 60 seconds with the accompanying brush.

  • Three pleasant flavors available —bubble gum, caramel & spearmint. 

  • Superior patient comfort & reception.

  • Adequate consistency delivers a lack of clumping.

  • Dries to natural tooth color.

  • Do not slump – remains where placed.

  • Treats dentin hypersensitivity.

  • Dries to a natural, esthetically pleasing color.

Save on Dental Supplies with code

Dental Varnish Frequently Asked Questions

Why do dental professionals prefer varnishes?

Varnish is a preferred mode of dental fluoride application due to its ease of use, longer exposure time to fluoride, and potential safety. The reservations with other delivery systems are that they have a greater risk of ingestion and lesser dental contact time. Most of the available varnishes comprise 5% NaF, in an alcohol and resin base. The alcohol evaporates, giving the system fast drying feature, while the resin enables the fluoride to glue over the teeth. However, the carrier can be the primary cause of complaint regarding the varnish, as it may be too sticky and deposits a visible film over the tooth surface. [5]

What is fluoride varnish?

Fluoride varnish is a dental treatment that forms a protective layer over the teeth, applied using a brush to prevent the formation of cavities on susceptible surfaces of the teeth as well as to stop the progression of caries that preexists. The painted fluoride varnish is adhesive and attaches itself over the tooth surface, making the tooth enamel harder thereby, preventing cavities. 

What is dental varnish used for?

Fluoride varnish is a treatment modality for the teeth that are used to prevent dental decay from occurring, slows it down, and reduces its progress. However, treatment with fluoride varnish will not completely reverse or prevent cavities. Fluoride varnish treatments work best to prevent caries in children who also combine it with regular brushing with fluoride toothpaste, regular flossing, having dental checkups regularly, and consuming a healthy diet.  

Is Fluoride Varnish Safe?

Fluoride varnish is generally considered safe. It is used by dentists and hygienists throughout the world for the prevention of dental cavities, particularly in children. It can be used in children from the time the first tooth appears. One application uses only a little amount of the varnish and there is a negligible risk of any fluoride being swallowed. The application takes only about a minute and the product rapidly hardens. It is then brushed off after four to twelve hours. [7] 

How long does dental varnish last?

The fluoride varnish adheres to the tooth surface and dries in a few hours. After this, it can be brushed away the next day. Nonetheless, the potential effects of fluoride can last for several months. The treatment needs to be repeated every three to four months for the best results.

How can I remineralize my teeth?

  • Regularly brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste.

  • Get fluoride varnish treatment after every few months

  • Reduce sugar intake

  • Chew sugarless gum – it contains xylitol which helps in remineralization

  • Eat food rich in vitamins and minerals

How is fluoride varnish applied to the teeth?

The fluoride varnish is applied to the teeth with the help of a small disposable brush that usually comes in the varnish kit. The patient is instructed to eat soft food for 2 to 3 hours after the procedure. The dried varnish can be brushed off the next day. The procedure is painless and quick.

Do adults need fluoride varnish treatment?

According to the American Dental Association (ADA), patients of 18+ years of age and adult patients having root caries are advised to undertake 2.26% fluoride varnish treatment a minimum of every 3 to 6 months. It is also shown by a study that all types of fluoride varnish treatments lead to a significant increase in scores of sensitivity from the baseline. [8]

Can enamel decay reverse?

Dental decay can be stopped in the initial stages. The early sign of tooth decay is when the white spots are seen on the enamel. If it is treated at this point, cavitation can be prevented. Enamel can be repaired with the minerals that come from saliva, fluoride toothpaste, and dental varnish. However, if not treated in time, the tooth decay progresses and cavitation occurs which can not be treated by fluoride varnish and decay cannot be reversed.

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We trust that you found this post both informative and practical for purchasing varnish supplies. If you’ve just discovered Noble Dental, we’re considered the top dentist supply company on the east coast with utmost focus on quality, fast shipping, and providing maximum savings for local dental practices. 

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References

  1. Water fluoridation basics. Division of Oral Health. National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. https://www.cdc.gov/fluoridation/basics/index.htm. Updated January 24, 2020. Accessed February 17, 2020.

  2. Professionally applied topical fluoride: Evidence-based clinical recommendations. J Am Dent Assoc. 2006;137(8):1151-1159. doi:10.14219/jada.archive.2006.0356

  3. Weyant RJ, Tracy SL, Anselmo TT, et al. Topical fluoride for caries prevention: Executive summary of the updated clinical recommendations and supporting systematic review. J Am Dent Assoc. 2013;144(11):1279-1291. doi:10.14219/jada.archive.2013.0057

  4. Marinho VCC, Higgins JPT, Sheiham A, Logan S. One topical fluoride (toothpaste, or mouth rinses, or gels, or varnishes) versus another for preventing dental caries in children and adolescents. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2004(1):CD002780. doi:10.1002/14651858.CD002780.pub2

  5. Martel S. A new generation of fluoride varnish is coming to you. Oral Health Group website. https://www.oralhealthgroup.com/features/new-generation-fluoride-varnish-coming/. Published September 14, 2017.

  6. Olson C M. What to consider when choosing a fluoride varnish (part 2). Dentistry IQ. Dec, 2017. https://www.dentistryiq.com/dentistry/products/hygiene/article/16366115/what-to-consider-when-choosing-a-fluoride-varnish-part-2

  7. Anonymous. Fluoride Varnish: What Parents Need to Know. Healthy Children. May, 2015. https://www.healthychildren.org/English/healthy-living/oral-health/Pages/Fluoride-Varnish-What-Parents-Need-to-Know.aspx

  8. Fluoride Varnishes for Dental Health: A Review of the Clinical Effectiveness, Cost-effectiveness and Guidelines [Internet]. Ottawa (ON): Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health; 2016 Oct 26. SUMMARY OF EVIDENCE. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK401516/

 

Dental Product Savings Guide for Savvy Dentists

How to save on popular dental supplies

 

These days so many dentists we come into contact with, and especially the small, solo practices, seem to find themselves caught "between the hammer and the anvil," so to speak. On the one side, they are committed to delivering the highest level of healthcare service to their patients, while dealing with the realities of a post-pandemic culture. On the other side, they are struggling to save costs on dental supplies in today's turbulent times.

It's our business to be aware of the challenges that dentists face, and we're here to help – and so to that end, we've put together a few key ideas on how to save on dental products, especially while buying dental supply products online.

There are two main things to consider here:

1.) The pros and cons of well-known brands, and

2.) How to be a savvy spender.

Why Consider Alternative Brands? 

Faced with what seems like a bewildering range of choices across the spectrum of dental supplies, a lot of dentists always opt for the name they know, without a second thought.

Big, well-known brand names, like 3M, for example, have spent years creating trust in the market. Many of these big brands have a well-oiled marketing machine, with a single aim: Keeping only that brand name in the front of the buyer's mind – and this is true whether you are buying your dental supplies online, or the old-fashioned way.

Typically, a busy dentist has a lot on his plate, so there's seldom time to consider, to shop around, or to compare prices and benefits. The risk of using sub-standard dental supplies is unacceptable  – so a lot of dental professionals simply make the easy choice – but that usually comes at a cost.

How significant is that cost?

Over more than four decades in the dental market, we've seen this cost range between 30-50% in unnecessary spending. Far too often buyers are choosing exactly the same quality of product, but paying more than they need to – simply because of a brand name, or because of slick marketing. Quite often these buyers are on the payroll and don't have an invested interest in saving money.

Let's put that number into perspective:

According to a benchmark study in 2017, based on a survey that calculated the average costs and earnings for a single dental practice, the amount spent on dental supplies averaged $71,498 or 7.2% of collections. Using only a conservative 30%, that would amount to a saving of $21 449.

How does that compare to your own averages? It might be time to consider alternative brands and become a savvy spender.

How to Become a Savvy Spender

In a previous post, we shared a couple of useful, general guidelines for cost-saving in a dental practice. Here, though, we are going to focus only on buying online dental supplies.

It all starts with developing sensible buying strategies – in other words, a little bit of forward planning. 

As a dentist, military-style Logistical planning is probably not your priority, but the goal is to implement a simple system that is proactive, instead of reactive. Let's illustrate this…

It's a busy Monday, and the practice is buzzing. The waiting room is only just able to accommodate the mask-wearing patients, in line with social distancing health guidelines, and the staff are all on their toes – and then you're informed that you've just opened the last batch of impression material.

You send someone to the storeroom for the next box, which you are sure is there, but alas, all that's left is an old box that has been on the shelf too long, and the expiry date is two weeks ago. 

Someone didn't follow the first-in-first-out procedure, and of course, there's the old finger-pointing game, but there’s no time for that. A recent delivery was short, and the person responsible for ordering hasn't followed up, and so it's up to you to make an emergency call to make sure you don't run out by Wednesday. You end up paying more than double for a top brand, plus additional priority shipping rates…

Now, these things do happen, even in a practice that runs like clockwork – but when this type of reactive buying becomes a regular thing, you're sure to be wasting thousands of dollars.

Having a proactive system, and strictly enforcing the simple logistical principles, makes all the difference. Such a system includes some common-sense supply rules that every savvy business owner needs to enforce:

  • Keeping tabs of stock on hand, quantities coming in, and quantities going out, and clearly defining and assigning that responsibility to a qualified staff member,

  • Setting appropriate reorder points for each supply item. Then ensuring that a suitable minimum trigger point is in place for each new order, based on supply lead times, and taking delivery times into account – for example, it may take two weeks, on average, from the time of order to the time of delivery, or it might take only a day. Based on that information, plus your average usage, you set your best reorder point.

  • Enforcing First-In-First-Out (FIFO), and training staff to  remember to check the dates when receiving stock, packing on the shelf, and when issuing stock from the storeroom,

  • Keeping all supplies in one central, controlled space, rather than all over the practice.

  • Clearly defining the roles and responsibilities for the staff that buys and places orders, and possibly incentivizing cost-saving initiatives, (within clear quality boundaries).

  • Identifying the best make of product to order each time, plus a list of acceptable alternatives if that brand is not available.

  • Enlisting the help of a Dental Supply company to help you streamline the process, and one that can get to know your ordering habits, to help with proactive planning.

In the long run this translates into savvy spending. It cuts out wastage and saves on premium delivery rates.

But beyond that, and more importantly, it gives you the time and peace of mind to make those key purchasing decisions – choosing the right products, balancing cost and quality – and that is where the real savings on dental supplies really accrue.

To put that into practical terms, please consider the following examples, which our regular dental clients have tried and tested for many years:

Varnish

MARK3 Varnish 5% Sodium Fluoride w/ TCP 50/bx 

This Sodium Fluoride Varnish has a resin-based formula, containing Tricalcium Phosphate, and compares favorably with the top-selling brands. It has a 60-second application time, delivering exact fluoride for effective desensitization.

Each box contains 50 unidose packages, each with 0.4ml of varnish and one applicator brush.

Now compare that to similar products:

  1. 3M™ Vanish™ 5% Sodium Fluoride White Varnish: 50 pack - $121.25 

  2. Duraflor Varnish Unidose 32 x 0.5ml Bubble Gum: 32 pack - $79.95 

  3. DuraShield CV Clear Varnish Strawberry 50/Bx. 5% Sodium Fluoride Varnish: 50 pack - $82.65

MARK3 VARNISH 5%sodium fluoride

 A quick calculation will show you what you could save over the course of a year, based on how much of these products you consume, and your typical purchase price…

Impression Material

VPS Impression Material 4/pk - MARK3 

Each PAck contains: 4 - 50ml cartridges

Vinyl Polysiloxane, VPS Impression Material is another good example. This product by MARK3 is an easy-to-handle, stable, and odor-free cartridge system, on par with other big brand names.

And compared to similar products:

  1. Genie VPS Impression Material - Light Body:  2 X 50 ml - $31.25 ($62.50 for 4) 

  2. 3M ESPE Express VPS Impression Material 4 X 50ml - $73.50 

  3. FLEXITIME Impression Material 2 X 50 ml - $44.95 (89.90 for 4) 

 

VPS MARK3 impressions material

Dental Cements and Liners

ProGlass One Kit Powder & Liquid Glass Ionomer Luting Cement

This cementation bond for metal inlays, onlays, posts, and orthodontic brackets delivers excellent bond strength and integrity for long-term restorations. The product ranks right alongside the competition. 

And compared to similar products:

  1. GC Fuji 1 Luting & Lining Glass Ionomer Dental Cement - $89.95 

 

Cements and liners on sale

Carbide Burs

Surgical Carbide Burs FG - Cargus

For surgical carbide burs, the watchwords are blade configuration and concentricity. This product by Cargus is tested for all parameters - size, shape, and integrity - to the highest quality standards. 

Compared to similar products:

SS White Burs Carbide FG 100/Pk - $249.99

 

Carbide Burs Surgical Carbide Burs

Crown and Bridge Materials

MARK3 Temporary Crown and Bridge Material

Ease of use, combined with a tough, long-lasting quality, make the Mark3 temporary crown and bridge material a solid option. It combines the best mechanical properties for provisional restorations - and also saves costs.

Contains 1- 50/ml (75gm) Cartridge plus 10 Mixing Tips

Compared to similar products:

  1. DMG Luxatemp Automix Plus Temporary Crown & Bridge Material - $223.10 

  2. Dentsply Integrity Temporary Crown & Bridge Material - $152.95 

Crown and Bridge Material

House brand PPE products

Disposable Lab Coats Knee Length 10/pk

PPE equipment is something that has always been important, but even more so in today’s world, with heightened public awareness of personal protection. Are you spending too much ensuring the safety of your staff and patients? 

Premium SMS Lab Coats come with Knit Collar and Cuffs, and a snap front. They are sufficiently durable and fluid resistant. The design ensures they are breathable, Latex-free, and fire retardant. 

PPE products

 

Compared to a competitor: 

Medflex Original Lab Coats - Blue Medium 10/Pk. Snap Front with Knit Collar: $84.00

Chair Covers

Full Chair Plastic Sleeves 29x80 

Dental chairs take a bit of punishment in a busy practice - so these full chair sleeves help to prolong the life of your equipment. They handle the wear of surface disinfectants, which are so essential for asepsis and cross-contamination control.

This alternative by Mark 3 compares well in every way with competitor brands. 

Chair Covers

 

How does that compare? 

  1. Starryshine Dental Chair Covers - Full Length, 48" x 56", (box of 150) - $45.00 

  2. PacDent Armor 29" x 80" Clear Plastic Chair Sleeves, Roll of 125- $38.00 

  3. Pinnacle Chair Sleeve No-Slip 48" x 56" Plastic Full Chair Covers, Box of 150 - $45.90 

 

As you can see, the potential for cost-saving is huge. A savvy dentist needs to make those purchasing decisions, and have a strategy that cuts out wastage and unnecessary spending. It’s our business to make that easier for you, and we would be happy to help you compare the numbers and find the perfect solution.

Dental Supplies: How to Make Cost-Conscious Choices for your Practice

Dental Supplies: How to Make Cost-Conscious Choices for your Practice

Every Dental Professional knows that where it comes to health and quality, there simply are no shortcuts. Competent, consistent, and high-quality patient care means investing in the best possible staff, equipment, and supplies. 

This has always been a tricky balancing act – and it has become more difficult than ever.

The global pandemic has affected business across the spectrum, and the business side of Dentistry is no exception. A big question on the mind of just about every solo dental practitioner these days is: How can I save costs?

How to Save on Dental Costs

 Your dental practice may be unique, but running a business comes with the same challenges for every industry. There are only so many overheads and expenses that you can carry before the financial wheels start to come off. That's when we need to make the hard choices – and cut. Much of the pain can be avoided by making wise choices from the start.

For the typical dental business, you will have to cater for employee salaries, facility costs, equipment costs, operational costs, supply costs, and marketing costs. When the financial pinch is felt, it becomes a matter of prioritizing - but there is only so much you can cut before you start undermining your future.

Often, saving money means that as a Dentist, you have to walk a tightrope. Making the wrong choice could hurt your business. You need to maintain the essential operational framework intact in order to hold onto your staff and to avoid scaring patients out the door.

The good news is that by carefully managing your dentist supply store relationship, operating and lab expenses, you can add tens of thousands of dollars to your bottom line. With that in mind, here are some useful guidelines for reducing overhead expenses, starting with supply costs.

Cost-Cutting Guidelines

  • Take a ruthless look at your income statement. Identify all superfluous expenditures, such as items used for labor, supplies, lab fees, and doctor benefits.

  • Explore house brands. Today,  the quality of private-label goods is higher and better than ever before. Retailers have full control over the development of their private brands, which significantly decreased the gap of distinctive quality between house brands and popular labels. For smaller dentist practices private dentist labels is a key to staying ahead of the competition. 

  • Pay more attention to the hidden expenses: Defective product returns, overstocked items held in inventory, and shipping and handling charges.

  • Diversify vendor portfolio. While managing multiple vendors can complicate supplier relationships, it reduces dependency, increases the flexibility of moving products, simplifies logistics, which allows better and faster delivery. Overall, having multiple vendors sophisticates competition, and optimizes price for products.

  • Reexamine your facility costs. You will be surprised at how much money can be saved by using cost-saving light fittings, using motion sensors, or Investing in a waterless vacuum system, for example.

Set (and Firmly Enforce) a Fixed Budget

It might seem impossible to calculate a set budget, especially for things that are used sporadically or in unexpected ways. Don't let that stop you! Dig out the records, and start by calculating and evaluating your average spend in detail over the previous years. This will give you a ballpark idea. Knowing your numbers brings peace of mind, and helps you keep your finger on the pulse of your business expenditure – and then – be ruthless with those unnecessary costs.

Reevaluate Your Ordering Strategies

Order only what is needed. While you are setting the budget, checking previous years for average supply spend, be sure to also check how much supply you are typically holding. Are you carrying too much? Could you save by ordering in greater bulk? This is also where the benefits of group and bulk buying factor in. 

Understand your order. It might be drudgery and keep you away from your patients, but knowing the details about what is on the market could save you a bundle. Are there cheaper alternatives? Can your representative negotiate better rates? Do they offer free goods or other cost-saving strategies? For example – if you offer them a larger share of your monthly buying budget, can they give you a better deal? The time and effort you spend in this research are certainly worth the savings you will see on the bottom line.

                                                             

Keep an Iron Grip on Your Inventory

Usually, convenience outweighs costs – but in tough times, you may have to change your strategy. Especially if your dental practice has multiple locations, it is highly likely that most of them have unused, overstocked items in the storerooms.

A huge supply sitting idle is a waste. Instead of stocking extra supplies in every room, keep the boxed inventories tightly controlled in the supply room. Keep tabs on where your supplies are going, and streamline the efficiencies. Tighter admin saves money.

Reexamine your Insurance Spending

Insurance tends to be something we purchase once, and then it gets relegated to the back of the mind – until it's time to pay the bills, that is!

Your business is changing, though, so it's wise to ensure that your insurance coverage changes along with the needs of your business. Set an appointment to review your coverage, and take the time to compare the rates you are paying, along with the details of the coverage with at least two to three competing insurance agents. You might save substantially on your premiums, plus you make sure that you avoid serious financial loss from being under- or over-insured.

Consider Buying Groups and DSO Affiliation

This may be the last item on the list, but it certainly isn't the least important. The DSO (Dental Service Organization) and Dental Buying Group model seems to be the direction the overall international dental market is taking.

In previous blog posts, we went into more detail about whether your practice should be part of a Dental Support Organizationthe, and group structures in modern dentistry. If this is something you are considering, read our POV on the benefits and drawbacks of the Group Dental Practice Model.

The cost-saving potential is a factor that weighs heavily in the minds of many solo practitioners. 

The simple economics of scale mean that large groups get preferential prices, more attention and better service from the supply companies, and better deals and perks.  

As you can see from the guidelines above, saving money and cutting costs is not going to be quick and effortless. A busy Dentist, especially if you are running your own practice, seldom has the time to invest in running the administration efficiently – and that is one of the biggest drawcards of the DSO model. It makes sense to leave the buying, stocking, ordering, staff administration, the legal and insurance hassles – all of the drudgery we have covered in this post – to the professionals, while you focus on your core strength – being a great Dentist.

In conclusion: Times are tough for businesses worldwide, and only those that adapt and tighten their belts will thrive in the long term. It just makes sense to become more cost-conscious.

 

A guide to dental nitrile glove uses for Savvy dentists

Dental Gloves

Gloves are a crucial daily item for a dentist's practice, used so often that we may sometimes forget their importance, and, how critical it is to pay attention to the material, fit, and quality. Oral Health professionals are at risk of disease exposure on a day-to-day basis, it is important for us to use the best quality dental gloves to protect our staff and patients. 

Recommendations and regulations have been formulated by the federal government for the prevention of disease transmission and the performance of safe procedures. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States has developed recommendations and guidelines for both patients and clinicians alike. As of now, infection control in a dental practice particularly comes from the 'Guidelines for Infection Control in Dental Healthcare Settings' laid down by the CDC in 2003.

Here’s what we are going to cover: 

  1. Types of disposable medical gloves

  2. Glove types based on material

  3. Advantages & disadvantages of nitrile gloves 

  4. 5 steps to selecting the right glove 

  5. The importance of ergonomics and fit 

  6. Facts & Myths on dentist use of gloves 

  7. Our community selection of top products 

  8. Medical Glove FAQs

In order to have adequate protection and safety for both clinicians and patients, it is essential to follow these guidelines, practice proper hand hygiene, select the right disposable medical glove type, brand and follow the steps of correct glove use. 

Here is a complete guide on the uses of nitrile gloves for savvy dentists followed by the frequently asked questions. But first, let’s see what the types of gloves are.

Types of medical gloves

1) Examination gloves and surgical gloves

For use in the medical fields, the gloves are categorized as Examination and Surgical. Both categories are subject to FDA authorization and only those which are FDA-approved can be used in clinics by doctors and dentists.

The examination gloves are not meant for surgical procedures. They are utilized when examining patients and carrying out procedures involving contact with mucous membranes. In contrast, the surgical gloves are sterile and are to be used for oral surgeries. Both examination and surgical gloves are medical-grade. However, the surgical ones are superior in quality and provide a more accurate fit and better tactile sensation.

 

2) Chlorinated and Non-chlorinated Gloves

In the category of powder-free gloves, you can choose between chlorinated or non-chlorinated disposable medical gloves. As the name suggests, chlorinated gloves are chlorine-treated rather than the typical powder, but retain the benefits of powdered gloves. 

On the contrary, chlorine-free gloves are more like the regular examination glove minus the chlorine odor. Note that non-chlorinated gloves are lined by gel/silicone coating and are more liable to cause allergies as compared to the chlorinated ones.

3) Powdered and Powder-free Gloves

Most of the nitrile gloves are powder-free. The powdered gloves were lined with cornstarch for easier donning but they were banned by the FDA in December 2016. This was due to allergies they might cause to the user’s skin and patient sensitivity.

On the other hand, the gloves that are not lined with powder are free of residue and decrease the risk of an allergic reaction. 

 

Glove types based on material

1. Nitrile Gloves

Nitrile gloves are superlative all-purpose gloves, appropriate for an array of applications. They provide the following features and benefits.

  • Can be used as a good barrier for solvents, oils, hydrocarbons, and some acids and bases.

  • Are highly puncture-resistant, and has excellent chemical resistance.

  • Any damage or tear is easily seen.

  • Nitrile gloves are a great choice for unexpected chemical splash protection.

Nitrile exam gloves

2. Latex gloves

Have high dexterity and sensitivity due to thin material usage, latex medical gloves are one of the most commonly used in the medical field. Additional features and precautions include the following.

  • Provide a good barrier and protection against infection.

  • These are suitable for inorganic chemicals but not very suitable for organic solvents.

  • Oils and hydrocarbon derivatives should be avoided.

  • They have high flexibility and dexterity.

  • Puncture holes are hard to detect. 

  • High dermatitis potential.

  • Common cause of latex allergy. 

3. Vinyl gloves

Often used as the less expensive choice, the use of vinyl gloves is not recommended with glutaraldehyde, alcohol or chemotherapeutic drugs. Its highlights include:

  • Resistant to oils and ozone.

  • Are latex-free.

  • Anti-static.

  • Have limited durability.

  • Mediocre elasticity and tensile strength.

  • Increased potential for punctures and tears.

  • Their use of chemicals is limited.

Vinyl gloves

Advantages of Nitrile Disposable Gloves

Nitrile gloves are best against tear, cut, and puncture resistance. The material is also good for handling abrasives and chemicals.

  • Durable and long-lasting.

  • Have excellent puncture and tear resistance. 

  • Provide an effective barrier against a variety of chemicals. 

  • Particularly important and used in cases of latex allergy.

  • Can be molded to your hands for a good fit.

  • Comfortable when worn for long periods.

  • Can be used in high-risk cases involving infection.

  • Resistant to numerous chemicals.

  • Their dark colors (blue or black) help in the identification of punctures.

Limitations of Nitrile Gloves

  • They are not very flexible when compared to natural rubber latex gloves

  • Can be damaged with oxygen, ozone, and ultraviolet light [1]

  • Might have less tactile sensitivity and have a slightly higher average price point. 

Considerations for Glove Selection

When looking at buying your dental glove supplies in bulk, ensure to keep in mind the below pointers. 

1. Barrier Integrity 

The performance reliability of gloves varies from one type to another. The barrier integrity is one of the factors that influence their infection control potential. It is described as the level of protection from pathogens (absence of tears or holes) it offers during use. 

Barrier integrity is affected by the manufacturing process and gloves’ base material. When choosing gloves, the barrier integrity that your brand provides should be considered.

2. Quality of the Manufacturing Process 

The manufacturing of gloves is an intricate procedure. To summarize, it involves dipping of the glove precursors into a liquid solution or suspension, next, rinsing, curing, and stripping of the gloves is done after which drying follows. Powder-free gloves then need further processing. High-quality standards of manufacturing are crucial for tailoring first-rate quality medical gloves. 

Thus, it is important to rigorously monitor the glove manufacturing process in order to obtain the excellent physical properties of the final product. 

It’s okay to request from the manufacturer the barrier performance data before you make a purchase, typically resellers will also have this data.

3. Base Glove Materials 

Understanding the material used to manufacture the gloves holds will help you choose the right gloves for you and it also reflects its barrier integrity. Most commonly used exam gloves’ base material include: 

  1. Natural rubber latex (NRL)

  2. Two synthetic materials including acrylonitrile-butadiene (nitrile), and polyvinyl chloride (vinyl, PVC). 

While the intrinsic physical properties of the diverse glove materials is important, the in-use durability of the gloves should also be assessed. This has been evaluated in several published studies on NRL, vinyl and nitrile exam gloves. These studies were done in diverse conditions and with varied stressors. Showing different strengths and durability with different materials. For example, Ker et al.’s 2002 study stated that the leakage percentage rates of standard vinyl and latex (NRL) were 35% and 9.0% respectively while in 2004 Ker et al.’s durability study reported the same to be 35.5%, 9.0% for these two materials including 7.5% for nitrile. [2, 3] 

Given the data, it is shown that nitrile gloves have the least leakage rate and are the most durable of the three materials. Glove selection recommendations have been made based on such studies. For instance, CDC’s Guidelines for Isolation Precautions, categorizes nitrile and NRL gloves to be preferable over vinyl for various clinical procedures that are done dexterously or those that may involve patient contact. [4]

4. Anticipated Characteristics 

Beside barrier integrity, several important characteristics are desired by dentists and medical professionals wearing disposable medical gloves. The attributes commonly desired are as follows.

  • Convenient removal from the container

  • Easy donning

  • Flexibility providing convenient movement 

  • Adequate fitting 

  • Safe grip

  • Perceptible sensitivity 

These predilections are subjective and task-dependent. Hence, individual staff glove evaluation is suggestive to ensure quality.

5 Steps to Choose the Best Glove Type

Make the best choice of glove depending upon the following aspects.

  1. The procedure to be undertaken. The best choice of the gloves should be made according to the task at hand e.g., patient examination or surgery)

  2. The material of the glove depending upon skin sensitivity. In case of latex allergy, non-latex, such as dental nitrile gloves should be used. Visa versa, latex gloves should be used for nitrile allergy.

  3. Choose the right fit. Ensure that the size of the glove best fits your hand before making a bulk purchase. It should not be too loose or too tight. Ideally, a variety of sizes should be available at your office. Too large a size can hinder your task performance whereas, too small gloves may be uncomfortable. 

  4. Good tactile sensation. When choosing the right glove it should be ensured that the tactile sensation of your skin should not be dramatically reduced. This depends upon the glove grip, thickness, and slipperiness of the material when wet.

  5. Prefer ambidextrous gloves. The gloves should allow equally well usage of both right and left hands; largely dependent upon the clinician’s preference.

Why Are Glove Ergonomics Important?

We all know that clinicians and hygienists wear gloves while examining or treating patients in order to minimize cross-contamination and maximize both clinician and patient safety. But, what most of us don’t know is that day-to-day use of disposable dental gloves may subsequently lead to incapacitating musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). 

Wearing gloves for extended periods constricts your hands which in turn can compress the nerves and vessels. While you know that dental procedures involve repetitive hand and wrist muscle activity, this, in a pinched position can severely impact the hand and arm. As a result, symptoms such as hand fatigue, inflammation of the tendons, and carpal tunnel syndrome can occur.

More than 50% of dentists have reportedly had hand fatigue 1 and about 65% of registered dental hygienists have had carpal tunnel syndrome. The signs of MSD can include the following.

  • Reduced range of motion

  • Diminished sensation

  • Difficulty and pain in movement

  • Reduced strength of grip

  • Loss of coordination 

Despite that these conditions are painful, they can also result in the loss of productivity, expensive medical treatment, and possible long-standing impairment if not treated. Hence, it is important to be vigilant about using ergonomically-right gloves. 

While the use of gloves in the dental profession dates back to several decades, their long-term effects on hand ergonomics have been largely unknown. However, it was only recently that some brands are starting to pay attention to the health of the hands of dental professionals by producing ergonomically-friendly gloves. [5]

Myths and Facts on Disposable Gloves

There are several myths prevailing about gloves and their performance. Knowing these myths and their realities is important to select the right glove for each task performance. These myths include the following.

Myth #1: Textured gloves provide superior grip

Reality: About disposable gloves, it is thought that the more textured they are the better grip they provide. However, texture plays an insignificant role in grip and smooth-surfaced gloves can also provide better grip. The grip largely depends on the surface treatment of the glove such as surface chlorination and coating. Chlorination alters the surface characteristics and produces a lower-tack, tough shell surrounding the glove, while also reducing the surface tack over the glove.

Myth #2: Exam Gloves’ safety remains constant with prolonged use

Reality: When in use, gloves may undergo wear and develop holes. It has been shown that the defect rate of gloves increases with prolonged use. In addition, if the curing and cross-linking is not adequate, dental nitrile gloves can swell and gradually develop defects or holes or defects over time. Defects frequently occur in the part in between the forefinger and thumb.

Myth #3: Gloves can be 100% single material composition

Reality: It is frequently claimed by glove suppliers that the composition of their gloves is "100%" pure, containing only the specified material. However, practically it is not possible to manufacture usable gloves of any material including nitrile, NRL, or latex without additives. Incorporating cross-linking agents, curatives, and accelerators to natural latex and nitrile exam gloves is important to produce strong and durable gloves. As for vinyl, plasticizers and activation agents are needed for strength. Additionally, most gloves also contain surfactants that support film formulation. 

Myth #4: Fillers reduce glove performance

Reality: Fillers are added in gloves in significant amounts. While fillers reduce the cost of the gloves, they also help to improve certain glove characteristics such as tear strength in natural latex gloves, improved via calcium carbonate fillers. However, the key is moderation, and up to 15% filler content can be added. Beyond this can negatively impact the glove’s performance.

Myth #5: Nitrile or vinyl gloves can address allergy issues

Reality: Allergies caused by glove use is a great concern for users. It is generally thought that glove-related allergies only occur due to natural latex material but this perception is not always true. What’s true, however, is that allergies caused by latex gloves are the most common and serious ones. These allergies can have systemic effects and can lead to anaphylactic shock.

Components found in both vinyl and nitrile gloves can provoke a chemical allergy. For instance, dental nitrile gloves and natural latex gloves mostly have carbamates or thiazoles that may lead to skin allergy. Several vinyl gloves use activation agents which may also cause skin allergies.

Myth #6: The term ‘powder-free’ denotes clean gloves

Reality: The procedure used to make a glove "powder-free" does leave residual chemicals on the surface of the gloves. The process of removing powder from the glove is done commonly by their surface treatment. The types of surface treatments include chlorination and adding of a polymer coating or wax. The gloves are washed before packing in the traditional process of chlorination. The purpose of washing the gloves is to remove any residues from them.

Myth #7: All disposable gloves are the same 

Reality: the general perception that all disposable gloves are the same stands false, as studies, already talked about above (Ker et al.) have shown that the leakage rates of different materials are different, each glove material comes with different physical characteristics, therefore, different prices. Typically, nitrile exam gloves are considered superior to latex, and latex are considered superior to vinyl. 

In actuality, all the materials have diverse properties. For example, nitrile has a higher resistance to puncture and can comparatively withstand more chemicals including solvents and oils. Likewise, latex has improved tear resistance, typically has a better fit, and has superior dexterity. Vinyl, on the other hand, has the finest electrostatic dissipation and can resist sulfuric acid better than latex or nitrile.

There is a slight difference in the glove properties from one brand to another as well. This reflects the different composition and standards of manufacturing processes used by the specific manufacturers. 

Myth #8: Low-cost gloves save you money

Reality: Choosing gloves entirely based on their price is a great mistake one would make. The value of the glove lies in more than just its cost. Other than price, durability, productivity, and safety risks also play an important part. [6]

Save 30% to 50% on Dental Supplies with Noble Dental Supplies

Our Top Pick Dental Gloves Online

Aurelia transform

  • The quality and durability that most dentists desire, comes in Aurelia Transform Powder-Free Nitrile Gloves.

  • 100% latex-free, can be used by practitioners with skin sensitivity to latex.

  • It offers improved barrier protection alongside impersonating the comfort of latex gloves. 

  • They are ergonomic-friendly thus, preventing hand fatigue.

  • They deliver the right comfort and fit your hands.

  • Aurelia Transform glove comes with 2.8 mil thickness that retains the right sensitivity. 

  • Their variety of colors offers something that meets every dentist’s choice.  You can now get excellent quality gloves at an affordable price.

Nitrile Gloves - Transform

Aurelia Sonic

  • The innovative personal protective gloves, the Aurelia Sonic are the best blend of durability and tactility. 

  • They are nitrile exam gloves that are 100% latex-free.

  • This ultra-thin formulation (2.2 mil) provides seamless fit to your hands whilst maintaining an excellent tactile sensation. 

  • Automated packing offers the convenience of single glove dispensing

  • These come in indigo blue color and allow smooth use for prolonged periods without tearing. The color contrast also increases visibility in case there is a tear or puncture.

Aurelia Sonic Powder free gloves

Aurelia Amazing 

  • Aurelia Amazing meets the needs of dentists desiring the highest level of comfort and sensitivity.

  • These nitrile disposable gloves are 100% latex-free, ideal for those allergic to latex.

  • This unique formulation offers durability for high-stress procedures.

  • They come in transblue color in 5 different sizes that offer a great fit for all hand-sizes.

  • Its 2.0 mil thickness provides the ultimate tactile sensation that sets them apart. 

  • They have an ambidextrous and finger-textured design.

     Nitrile powder free gloves - Amazing

 

Emerald powder-free Nitrile Dental Gloves

  • Emerald Powder-Free Nitrile Dental Gloves offer great comfort at an affordable price. 

  • This latex-free formulation is best for sensitive skin.

  • These nitrile exam gloves are textured and exhibit outstanding tactile sensitivity. 

  • Its ergonomic-friendly design protects against hand fatigue.

  • Emerald nitrile gloves provide superior tensile strength and chemical resistance.

  • What’s unique? They come with a beaded cuff that allows convenient donning.

  • Emerald disposable medical gloves meet FDA recognized as Class 1 Medical Devices. 

    Examination Gloves

Protocols to follow when using gloves

Handwashing should be done every time the gloves are worn and removed, prior to exiting the operatory, with visible soiling of hands, and after contacting potentially contaminated objects. According to the Organization for Safety and Asepsis Procedures (OSAP), the handwashing protocols to be followed pre and post every procedure include:

  • Wetting the hands with water

  • Applying soap to hands and rubbing hands to create lather

  • Rubbing hands for at least 15 seconds, ensuring all surfaces are covered

  • Rinsing hands with water

  • Drying hands with a disposable towel

  • The towel should be used to turn off the faucet 

  • For surgical procedures, the protocols to be followed are as under:

  • Remove any bracelets, watches or rings.

  • Wash off fingernails under running water with the help of a nail cleaner.

  • Scrub forearms and hands according to the manufacturer’s recommended time.

  • Dry hands before wearing surgical gloves. [7]

Hand Hygiene is Must

The major part of adequate PPE product usage and cross-contamination control is donning of gloves. However, practicing routine hand washing and hygiene maintenance is crucial to implement complete asepsis protocols. 

Regular hand-washing coupled with gloving will deliver adequate protection to both clinicians and patients from infection dissemination. Hand hygiene holds immense importance as an effective tool to prevent disease transmission and must be prudently implemented for optimum defense and safety.

Steps for glove donning

  1. Take out a glove from its box

  2. Touch only the restricted surface of the glove that corresponds to the wrist (at the top edge of the cuff)

  3. Wear the first glove

  4. Use the bare hand to hold the second glove and grasp the restricted surface as done before.

  5. While wearing the second glove, avoid touching the skin or the forearm with the first glove. To do so, turn the external surface of the first-donned glove.

  6. Once both gloves are worn, the gloved hands should not touch anything that is not indicated for the procedural glove use.

 

Dental Exam Gloves Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

When should dental assistants change gloves?

Gloves should be donned when the clinician comes in contact with the patient’s mucous membrane for examination or task performance. However, they should also be changed in the following circumstances.

  • When they come in contact with other surfaces

  • When contact occurs with potentially contaminated objects not indicated for the treatment procedure.

  • When visible soiling occurs with something.

  • When tear or damage occurs during the procedure when donned for prolonged periods.

What are nitrile gloves?

Utilized as a disposable glove compound, nitrile is a synthetic rubber. Whilst nitrile has been long available, its price was higher previously and has reduced only recently to  be more affordable. Besides their physical characteristics including strength and durability, its cost is the reason why nitrile gloves are gaining more acceptability in the medical and dental industries. Other merits of nitrile gloves include higher puncture resistance and improved chemical resistance than other glove materials.

What are nitrile gloves made of?

Dental nitrile gloves are made for use by medical and dental professionals. They are made from a compound called nitrile. This compound is essentially a synthetic reprocessed form of latex. Nitrile is a co-polymer, designed by a combination of butadiene and acrylonitrile. Formerly, nitrile gloves begin as rubber obtained from trees. Next, they are converted into latex rubber after which they are reprocessed until a nitrile compound is formed. The latex proteins are removed by additional processing removes all latex proteins. 

Can you wash nitrile gloves? 

No gloves in the medical or dental fields cannot be reused or washed. More widely used gloves in the medical field are disposable ones and are intended only for single use. After use, these can be donned off and disposed of without hassle. 

Can you be allergic to nitrile gloves?

While skin allergies are mostly associated with latex gloves, nitrile gloves contain components such as thiazoles and carbamates that may also cause skin sensitivity or allergy. In case you are allergic to nitrile or any of the components present in it, consider using other materials for daily use in your clinical practice.

Where to buy nitrile gloves? 

You can easily buy nitrile gloves online. When buying nitrile gloves, ask several questions about the vendor and assess the following features.

  • Settle for a reputable vendor. 

  • Take opinion from fellow dentists who have experience in using gloves, or search from social media forums talking about various topics such as Reddit. 

  • It’s better to purchase gloves from brands that are tested and authorized for their quality. 

  • Prefer brands that meet FDA standards of manufacturing and composition.

Are utility gloves mandatory for dental offices?

Nitrile utility gloves are suggested to be worn in the dental clinic while performing instrument processing or on-patient procedures. Considered puncture-resistant and heavy-duty the utility gloves provide greater protection to the hands as compared to thinner gloves. Hence, the CDC and Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) recommends the use of nitrile utility gloves. According to OSHA’s recommendation, every individual in the dental office should have a personal pair of gloves.

Are nitrile gloves chemical resistant?

Dental nitrile gloves have excellent overall chemical resistance and are typically less costly than other types of gloves. This is why they are more commonly used for diverse task performance than other materials. Nitrile exam gloves can resist kerosene, gasoline, and other petroleum solvents. Medical-use gloves are made from nitrile to prevent latex allergies, it is resistant to fats and oils as well.

However, nitrile gloves are not advised to be used with organic chemicals containing nitrogen, ketones, and strong oxidizing acids.

Do nitrile gloves cause cancer?

Nitrile gloves may comprise bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate (DEHP) that are considered carcinogenic. However, there is a lack of research confirming whether nitrile gloves can cause skin cancer and long-term longitudinal studies are warranted.

Akin to other glove materials, nitrile gloves are also sensitive to alcohol degradation. They are also shown to be ozone degradation sensitive. In case of a breach, nitrile gloves can easily tear leading to breaks. As a result, the glove pieces may end up in the food that may have carcinogenic potential in the long run. 

Are nitrile gloves BPA-free?

Nitrile exam gloves are BPA-free, phthalate-free, latex-free, vinyl-free, MBT-free, and powder-free.

Are nitrile gloves heat resistant? 

Nitrile glove material is highly heat resistant and has a great 250°C contact heat resistance. Coupled with high dexterity and great grip that is exhibited by the nitrile coat, these gloves outshine in industries including mouldings, panel handling, and oven use. Nitrile’s outstanding mechanical protection, flexibility, and dexterous design make them ideal for handling hot objects.

Chloroprene gloves vs nitrile

Chloroprene is also called Neoprene which was the first synthetic rubber. It exhibits high abrasion resistance and improved cut resistance. It combats degradation brought about by aging, exposure to sunlight, ozone, weather, and oxidation. Chloroprene also offers flame resistance with heat stability of up to 93°C (200°F). It delivers outstanding resistance to a variety of chemicals such as acids, fats, alcohols, refrigerants, caustics, ketones, detergents, and fertilizers. Neoprene® is also combined with natural rubber in some glove coating formulations.

Nitrile is the copolymer of acrylonitrile and butadiene. It exhibits remarkable resistance to physical threats including cuts, punctures, snags, and abrasion. Although nitrile is not flame-resistant, it’s good for temperature ranges between -4 and 149°C (25 to 300°F). Nitrile provides substantial resistance to fuels, oils, and certain organic solvents. Nitrile and chloroprene are rubbers that have similar characteristics but some differences in properties. Both glove materials have elasticity and can return to their former shape after being stretched. In a nutshell, nitrile is acceptable due to its chemical, heat, and abrasion resistance while chloroprene is known for its durability and weather resistance.

Disposable gloves vinyl vs latex

Latex gloves offer excellent barrier protection. They are comfortable, cost-effective, and provide great levels of tactile sensitivity. They have remarkable durability and flexibility which makes them perfect for most medical and dental procedures. However, allergies is a common concern caused by latex. In that case, latex gloves cannot be used and an alternative material such as nitrile is to be chosen.

PVC, a petroleum-based film is used to manufacture vinyl gloves. These are inexpensive but are less durable when compared to nitrile and latex. In addition, they provide inadequate protection against contaminants or chemical agents. Stretching vinyl gloves cause separation between the individual molecules compromising their integrity and impeding their barrier protection. Their reduced price and low barrier protection allow their use for low infection and non-hazardous environments.

Are all nitrile gloves powder-free?

As powdered nitrile gloves were banned by the FDA, all nitrile gloves are powder-free.

What are the best quality disposable gloves? 

The best quality disposable gloves have:

  • High strength and durability

  • High tear and puncture resistance

  • Good flexibility

  • Excellent chemical and heat resistance

References: Stoessel K, Smith S M. Dental Supplement | Medical Glove Selection for Dental Professionals. The clinical issue. Issue 5. Kimberly-Clark Healthcare Education. 2008. 

    1. Kerr LN, Chaput MP, Cash LD, et al. 2004 Sep. Assessment of the Durability of Medical Examination Gloves. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene 1: 607-612.

    2. Kerr LN, Boivin WS, Chaput MP, et al. 2002 Sep. The Effect of Simulated Clinical Use on Vinyl and Latex Exam Glove Durability. Journal of Testing and Evaluation 30(5): 415-420.

    3. Siegel JD, Rhinehart E, Jackson M, Chiarello L, HICPAC. 2007 Jun. Guideline for Isolation Precautions: Preventing Transmission of Infectious Agents in Healthcare Settings. Online: www.cdc.gov. Accessed 6/2/2008.

    4. Pereira M. The Importance of Glove Ergonomics to Dentistry. CDA. DECC, 2015. 

    5. Baker J. & Wagner M. Nine Myths About Disposable Safety Gloves. Occupational Health & Safety. Apr, 2010. 

    6. Olk M J. Infection Control In Practice. Organization for Safety & Asepsis Procedures. Jan, 2003. Vol. 2(1).  

Pros & Cons of Group Dental Practices
How are SGPs different from DSOs? And what makes it so attractive to run a group dentistry business? Your trusted dental supply store reviews the pros & cons.
Weighing the Pros & Cons of the Group Dental Practice Model

How DSOs help Dentists build practice

 

Dental Support Organizations (DSO’s) such as Heartland Dental,  Aspen Dental, and Pacific Dental Services have allowed many dental professionals to concentrate on their core talents, namely, being great dentists, instead of juggling the demands of running businesses. 

Welcome to the DSO Series

  1. Part 1: Should you join a DSO? 👈 You are here

  2. Part 2:  Weighing the pros & cons of an SGP 

Joining a DSO could be the dream choice for your mid-to-long-term future in the dental industry, or it could just as easily devolve into the opposite - a nightmare. How can you know if it is the right choice for you? The short answer: It’s a matter of perspective. 

It depends on your vision, your long-term strategy in the market, and it hinges on knowing your own personal strengths and weaknesses, and those of your staff and current situation. Your individual needs and priorities will ultimately determine that answer, so to help you make an informed choice, consider the pros and cons we examine in this article.

What is the Future of the DSO model?

Following the trends in medical care, Dental DSO’s are in a phase of rapid growth. In 2019 a leading global investment banking and asset management company, namely William Blair, reported on the growth prospects for Dental Support Organizations

The firm estimates that the largest DSOs are growing their number of practices by roughly 13 to 14 percent per year. DSOs currently control roughly 16 percent of all American Dental practices, and they are on track to reach 30 percent for 2021.

Over the last two decades, the dental industry has seen a lot of consolidation. That includes a number of models, including minority ownership, mergers, multi-location dental offices, nondentist ownership, and investor or corporate practices. It seems as if this trend will continue to accelerate into the future. Where does that leave you?

What Are the Benefits? 

Not all DSO’s are cut from the same cloth, and some will offer more benefits, or possibly drawbacks, compared with others. Below is a list of advantages, and the reasons why so many small practices have joined the trend. 

Invest in a Better Work-Life Balance

The demands of successfully running a dentistry practice can be more of a challenge in reality than it would seem on the surface. Keeping strict control of finances and expenses, managing staff, purchasing equipment and supplies, and the constant, complicated administration that goes along with all of that, leaves you with very little time to be a great dentist.

It makes a lot of sense to focus on your core skills as an individual, and outsource the tasks that consume a lot of time and focus on the experts in those related fields. Most DSO structures will take care of general administration, like insurance, making sure you are complying with health and safety regulations, hiring and firing, Human Resources, payroll, and legal administration. 

That enables dentists to focus on what they love and do best, to reclaim those extra hours, which could be better spent with family, and looking after the holistic needs of your day-to-day existence, or simply working on your golf game.  

As a kind of bonus, having more time and available energy, a dentist can then also focus on patients, nurturing those beneficial long-term relationships that sustain a healthy practice. After all, Dental Care really means Patient Care - and that leads to a whole and happy work-life balance.

Gain Financial Leverage  by Utilizing the Power of DSO Muscle

Negotiating with dental suppliers can get time-consuming unless you are dealing with the right dental supply company. Are you paying a premium because you are unable to buy in bulk quantities?  

Save 30% to 50% on Dental Supplies with Noble Dental Supplies

DSO’s generally have far more buying muscle and can reduce the cost of supplies by negotiating with distributors and obtaining price reductions on your behalf. In the long run, this can make a huge difference to the financial future of your business.

What about leading dental technology? We all know that it isn’t cheap! A small practice may not be able to invest in all the latest equipment that is available, as compared to a practice affiliated with a leading DSO. Even if they make the costly investment, it may be years before the equipment is paid off, or the lease expires. 

Meantime, technology evolves. DSOs will often provide the research, cost negotiation, and the necessary implementation, training, and ongoing tech support required for the latest, fast-evolving technologies.

The same principle applies where it comes to legal help and insurance - both of which are typically nightmares for the small fish. The solo practice or small partnership will not have the bargaining muscle, the legal expertise, the time, or the administrative capabilities of the Dental Service Organization - who are the specialists in these dimensions of the business.

Choose a Wise (and Lucrative) Entry and Exit Strategy

When weighing up the pros and cons, it is vital to know the details about the entry and exit strategies contained in the contract. One of the major perks can be Entry and Exit payments.

The details of the contract will depend on many factors, but successful dental practices are always attractive to those DSO buyers. They may offer you five to seven times a multiple of earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA). A typical deal will give you 80% cash at closing and 20% equity share in the larger entity. Nothing to sniff at!

That means a large payday both when you sign the partnership agreement,  and later when you cash in your stock. However - the devil may be hiding in the details, so to speak. That’s where Due Diligence comes to the rescue.

Some things to consider: 

  • Is there an opportunity for equal ownership, or do you only get a minority? 

  • If it’s the latter, then how much capital must you contribute to becoming equal? 

  • How long will it take you to break even through increased compensation? And what about the group practice’s retirement plan? 

  • You may have a 401(k) plan, but what about age-weighted profit-sharing contributions, not to mention a defined-benefit or cash-balance plan?

Keep in mind of course, when affiliating you transition from owner to that of a salaried contractor. Weigh the balance carefully. 

Dentists are seldom experts at financial planning, so be sure to enlist the help of a trustworthy advisor, who has experience with DSO contracts. 

What are the Drawbacks?

To be fair, joining forces with a Dental Support Organization is not the perfect fit for everyone. There are several cons to consider before signing that contract.

Do You Need to Be the Boss?

One of the biggest drawbacks is that you lose your autonomy. If you have an entrepreneurial spirit and love to chart your own course, then this may be the biggest loss.

You may end up as a square peg in a round hole. Will the type of dentistry you love to practice fit with the type of procedures the DSO requires for their ‘bread and butter?’ Remember, you will usually be contractually bound to work there for the next three years at least. There are good reasons why many associate dentists leave DSOs.

Any large corporation and the DSO’s are no exception - has their rules and regulations, and their company culture. That kind of thing can go either way. Either it will enhance your practice, or it will destroy what you have so carefully created on your own. Make sure you know the regulations and requirements for you and your staff before making the important decision.

What are the Exit Risks?

Getting out of your contract may be a lot more emotionally and financially draining than a bad divorce! A few months down the line you may discover that the perks do not really outweigh the benefits, or that you simply don’t fit the corporate culture and politics - and if so, you will need a good plan B.

There may be penalties and financial costs for a premature exit - so consider all options wisely before you take the plunge. You should also be aware of non-compete clauses, and their duration. They may prevent you from practicing somewhere else should you choose to.

Coupon on Dental Supplies

Conclusion

The future of dentistry will almost certainly contain both the solo dentist and the DSO model, based on the trends we have seen in the wider medical industry as a whole. Judging by the current rate of growth, it seems that more will opt for the benefits of joining one of the growing DSO groups, although there is still much controversy, and many will decide to go it alone instead.

Which option will suit your own personal vision for your practice best? That depends on your personal perspective. 

 

 

Buying Dental Handpieces - A Quick Starter

Dental handpiece banner

Dental handpieces are an extension of a dentist’s arms. It is the primary instrument used in combination with other tools like burs. While dental handpiece instruments are used in everyday practice, the noise they create alongside the heat generation is two of the biggest concerns dentists have since those factors impact patient experience.

The essence of picking quality handpieces is to ensure quality procedures and patient satisfaction. 

Dentists utilize various types of electric dental handpieces. They have the same function and “almost” the same characteristics. However, little issues like water not running right or your chair energy can dramatically decrease handpieces’ lifetime and impact your practice reputation.

In this article, we will cover: 

  1. The damages the wrong handpiece can cause

  2. The reason you should invest in quality high- and slow-speed handpieces is to protect yourself and your patients. 

  3. Some examples of handpieces, such as that you can buy.

Let’s start with the potential damage caused by using the wrong handpiece

The wrong handpieces can make louder than expected noise and scare your patients, and even damage your patients’ teeth due to malfunction. If handpiece parts and attached products such as the bur are not working properly, this may have detrimental effects on your performance as a practitioner. See the below list of issues to keep in mind when shopping for these dental tools (shopping list below).

1. Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS)

CTS is considered the most frequently occurring syndrome affecting dentists, caused by nerve compressions. This may occur due to inadequate angle of the wrist during use and added pressure on the joint.

2. Burning of handpiece leading to low-quality results

The coolant is important to ensure you won’t burn your tool. If it is not working properly, it may result in several problems. These include damage caused to your handpiece cartridge and burning your finger. 

In addition, if your handpiece’s water system is not working correctly or there’s poor lighting, it can lead to the working site's obscured vision, leading to reduced working efficiency and inaccurate procedures when doing composite fillings, root canal treatments, extractions, and more. Besides, it can burn your patient’s mouth and damage the tooth structure. 

3. Risk of hearing loss

Dental handpieces that are overly noisy can expose you to damage your hearing over time. Although the risk of damage to your ears from the 90-99 decibel level of noise created by the handpiece is minimal, exposure to such noise on a daily basis for 15-45 minutes at a time, multiple times per day, can be detrimental for the cochlear cells over the years.

4. Development of Neuropathy

The study by Occupational and Environmental Medicine on Neuropathy in female dental personnel exposed to high-frequency vibrations has shown that dental personnel, particularly women, who are exposed to high-frequency vibrations from the high-speed handpiece are at risk of developing significant weakening of vibrotactile sensation, strength, and motor performance that may eventually lead to neuropathy.

5. Risk of cross-contamination

Reusing dental handpieces without sterilizing them can substantially put patients at risk. The evidence from an article on Internal contamination of air-driven low-speed handpieces and attached prophy angles published by the Journal of the American Dental Association has repeatedly shown that both high and slow speed handpieces that are not autoclavable can be sources of infection and increase the risk of cross-contamination.

However, does sterilizing handpieces possibly reduce their longevity? Well, this can be true but only in cases where the equipment is not adequately maintained. However, Dr. Judith R Chin in her study - Internal contamination of air-driven low-speed handpieces and attached prophy angles, concluded that properly maintained dental handpiece instruments 500 sterilization cycles can be expected without significantly affecting their performance.

Points to consider when investing in quality dental handpieces

Investing in quality electric or air-driven handpieces is fundamental to running a quality dental practice. Furthermore, first-rate surgical handpieces would give you the best clinical outcomes with profound patient satisfaction. This would be a positive reflection of your integrity while also earning you long-term patient retention. 

  • It should have FDA-approval

  • It should be autoclavable

  • It should not create a noise of more than 70-85 decibels

  • The size of the head should not be too big for ease of access and visibility

  • It should exhibit minimum vibration while working

  • All the handpiece parts and products, like turbines, lubricants, and cleaners, etc., should be compatible and also of high quality. 

Deals on Dental Handpieces

Our picks for buying handpieces online

1. Maxso Contra Angle-Smart Slow Speed Attachments from Beyes Dental

Beyes’ handpieces offer multiple contra-angle heads that meet all your day-to-day treatment needs. 

Highlights: 

  • They work seamlessly with a mutual handpiece shank, providing every clinician the ease of matching their specialized needs. 

  • Shanks and heads can all be autoclaved at a maximum of 135℃ 

  • Very durable material 

  • The heads or shanks of these pieces can be bought separately, offering you the convenience of combining them according to your use. 

Maxso Contra Angle-Smart Slow Speed Attachments - Beyes Dental

2. Airlight M800X Torque Mini Head Highspeed Handpiece from Beyes Dental 

The Airlight M800x handpiece is one of the leading high-speed handpieces. It features air-driven technology, is durable, and works at a torque of 25-watts. Its direct LED light system offers a brighter wider illumination as opposed to other power-optic tools. What’s more? Its built-in generator eliminates the need to connect the handpiece with the delivery unit’s fiber-optic system. 

 

With its advanced technology and four-port water spray, Beyes’ Airlight M800X Highspeed Handpiece is both user-friendly for clinicians and comfortable for patients.

Highlights:

  • Instant-stop technology prevents backflow and noise

  • Quattro spray (four water ports) offering optimal cooling

  • X ball bearings make it more durable than others

  • 27W torque offers precision cutting 

  • Built-in generator removes the need for attachment to a dental unit’s fiber-optic system

  • Clear operative field with direct LED+

  • Micro-Tex offers anti-slip operation

Airlight M800X Torque Mini Head Highspeed Handpiece - Beyes Dental

3. Airlight M800 Plus High-Speed Handpiece by Beyes Dental 

The innovative Airlight PLUS is a durable, air-driven handpiece available in the market. It has a torque of about 25 watts and is intended to cater to 60 PSI air pressure, offering the clinician composure. Alight M800 Plus is a true leader in the air-driven high-speed handpiece category, with its innovative features that include:

  • The advanced builtin microgenerator does not need a connection to the dental unit’s fiber-optic system

  • No overheating with its triple water spray.

  • Titanium body offering minimal to no operative slippage 

  • Direct LED provides a wider light pattern

  • Predominantly quiet operation and longer lifespan with its ceramic ball bearings.

Airlight M800 Plus Highspeed Handpiece - Beyes Dental

To Sum Up

Your handpiece serves as a paintbrush that you can use to craft perfect and beautiful smiles for your patients. By investing in the right high-quality handpiece, you can save money and time with concurrent issues and transform lives with peace of mind.

References:

  1. Safety Tips to Prevent Hearing Loss. ADA.  https://success.ada.org/en/wellness/safety-tips-to-avoid-hearing-loss

  2. Carpal Tunnel caused by Unmaintained Dental Handpieces. Hughes. https://hughesdentalrepair.com/carpal-tunnel-caused-unmaintained-dental-handpieces/

  3. Akesson I, Lundborg G, Horstmann V, Skerfving S. Neuropathy in female dental personnel exposed to high-frequency vibrations. 1995;52: 116-123. https://oem.bmj.com/content/oemed/52/2/116.full.pdf

  4. Evans S. A practice manager’s guide to dental handpieces. Dentistry Online. Aug, 2018. Williams G. Dental handpieces: What to consider before you buy (part 1). Dentistry IQ. Aug, 2019.https://www.dentistryiq.com/dentistry/products/handpieces-burs-and-polishers/article/14038207/dental-handpieces-what-dentists-should-consider-when-making-a-purchase

  5. Anonymous. Dental Handpieces and Other Devices Attached to Air and Waterlines. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Mar, 2016. https://www.cdc.gov/oralhealth/infectioncontrol/faqs/dental-handpieces.html

  6. Kelsch N. Sterilizing handpieces. RDH. Nov 2011. https://www.rdhmag.com/infection-control/article/16408601/sterilizing-handpieces

  7. Anonymous. Tips for choosing the right handpiece. Jul, 2020. https://www.dentaltix.com/en/blog/tips-choosing-right-handpiece

  8. Chin JR, Miller CH, Palenik CJ. Internal contamination of air-driven low-speed handpieces and attached prophy angles. J Am Dent Assoc. 2006 Sep;137(9):1275-80. doi: 10.14219/jada.archive.2006.0386. PMID: 16946433. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16946433/

A Guide to Dental Disinfectants and Sterilants

 

Dental Disinfectants and Sterilants

There's an old Romanian proverb that says: "If you want to sweep the steps clean, start at the top."  

Cleanliness, and especially the control of infectious organisms is certainly right at the top of the priority list in any dental practice. Choosing the right disinfectants and sterilants is both practical and essential - so this guide is here to inform you of the most important things to consider when choosing, as well as to provide you with the best options for buying the perfect product.

Why is Disinfection so Important?

As a rule, healthcare professionals tend to be hyper-aware of the risks of poor or substandard dental disinfection. Cross-infection is always a danger, and since the start of the 2020 pandemic, the risks have only increased. Effective hygiene procedures will cover not only hand-hygiene, but also the thorough disinfection of the dental clinic, identifying high risk surface areas, devices and equipment in particular. 

Is there a difference between disinfecting and sterilizing?

The CDC guidelines for cleaning and disinfecting environmental surfaces in dental offices clarifies the differences between disinfecting and sterilizing as follows:

“Disinfection destroys most pathogenic and other microorganisms by physical or chemical means. In contrast, sterilization destroys all microorganisms, including substantial numbers of resistant bacterial spores…”

The guidelines specify and define general housekeeping surfaces and non-critical surfaces, as well as clinical contact surfaces, such as countertops and dental units. The appropriate chemicals will work best for the different areas. For lower risk procedures and areas, simple cleaning and disinfection will be all that is needed - but in higher risk areas a complete sterilization may be necessary.

What is the Proper Way to Use Dental Disinfectants?

Dental instruments, devices, and equipment can be broadly categorized according to their risk for infection. The three classes are:

  1. Critical
  2. Semi-critical, and
  3. Noncritical. 

In order to understand the difference, we can define them roughly as follows:

  • Critical: Any instrument or device that penetrates or comes in contact with soft tissues or bone are defined as critical. Obviously the risk here is greatest, and therefore these should be sterilized by heat. Examples of critical devices include  periodontal scalers, scalpel blades, and surgical dental burs.

  • Semi-critical: A medical device that comes into contact with mucous membranes or non‐intact skin is defined as semi-critical. Here the recommendation is to sterilise by moist heat after cleaning. Some of these devices or instruments may be heat-sensitive. In this case, the alternatives are to use either a low temperature sterilisation process or a high level instrument grade chemical disinfectant. Suitable products are listed below for your convenience.

  • Non-critical: This is a medical device that only comes into contact with intact skin (but not mucous membranes) and therefore poses the least risk of transmission of infection. This level of device should be cleaned as necessary with detergent solution. If further treatment is deemed necessary, you can disinfect with a low level or intermediate level instrument grade disinfectant after cleaning. There are a number of viable products for this purpose in this list.

It should be clear from the  above that it is important to select the proper disinfection or sterilization procedure for each specific device. 

Disregarding the manufacturing specifications for intended use could cause damage to equipment. More importantly, since these specific chemicals are by nature toxic to living organisms, it means that sterilants and disinfectants must always be handled very carefully!

Customers should always be provided with the information needed to match the disinfectant or sterilant to the proper devices, instruments and critical levels.

What Should I Keep in Mind when Choosing a Disinfectant?

There are many products to choose from, so to help you make the best possible choice, please consider the following guides:

  • Consider the Contact Time. Many disinfectants dry before the necessary contact time is achieved, especially those with long contact times or high levels of alcohol. Since time is always of the essence in a busy dentist’s office, choose a product that has a realistic contact time.

  • Match the disinfectant to your equipment. Dental equipment is seldom cheap or easy to replace. Make sure the product you use will not harm your devices, equipment or surfaces.

  • Match the disinfectant to your cleaning tools. Certain kinds of cleaning equipment react badly with some kinds of disinfectant or sterilant. For example, cotton and some microfiber cleaning tools can bind with quaternary ammonium compound-based disinfectants (quats), preventing the release of the disinfectant onto the surface without the user being aware of it. The effectiveness of the process will be severely undermined - so make sure you know which products to use for each procedure.

  • Take it easy on your staff, clients and guests! Some products have strong odors, or they may be irritating to the eyes, skin or respiratory tracts, and may require the use of personal protective equipment (PPE). Limit the use of such disinfectants, and rather choose a product that is friendly to the consulting environment. The products below are some of the most suitable in this regard.

Which are the Best Dental Disinfectants?

Every dental practice is different, and there is a staggering variety of different products to choose from. How can we know which is best? As we have mentioned above, keep in mind that disinfectants generally come in three classes:

  1. High level disinfectants - cold sterile solutions
  2. Intermediate level disinfectants
  3. Low level disinfectants

Furthermore, these three different classes of product also come in a variety of applications, including liquids which are sprayable, aerosols and pre-moistened wipes. On this point the CDC recommends: “When used correctly, disposable disinfectant wipes, cloths, or towelettes are effective for cleaning and disinfecting environmental surfaces in dental settings. Any disinfectant used in a dental setting should be registered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and be approved for use in health care settings (i.e., hospital grade).”

To make your selection easier, we have collected the most effective and most popular items below.

MetriCide 28 Day Cold Sterilization 1 Gallon

MetriCide 28 day Cold Sterilization is ideal for stainless steel instruments, thermometers, anesthesia equipment, respiratory therapy equipment, and also rubber and plastic objects. It is suitable for non-critical, semi-critical and critical devices. 

Metricide 28 disinfectant is dependent on a minimum effective concentration of glutaraldehyde, as measured by a chemical indicator. So in order to help prevent healthcare-acquired infections (HAIs) and safeguard healthcare personnel, it is recommended that you test the glutaraldehyde solution before each use.

The Metrex 10 2800 metricide 28 high level disinfectant sterilant is highly recommended for immersible and heat-sensitive equipment and instruments. It contains surfactants.

 

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BirexSE®

As far as dental disinfectant liquids go, BirexSE® has few competitors. For more than 20 years it has been  known, trusted and used in the dental industry, and is considered as the top tier among its peers. Birex meets the 2003 CDC guidelines for hospital disinfectant liquid and dental disinfectant spray on the intermediate level. 

It is usually used as a concentrate, and that makes it highly cost-effective as a one-step surface cleaner and broad-spectrum, antimicrobial disinfectant. As a concentrate, it takes up less storage space too.

EPA-approval states that it is effective against TB Mycobacterium, HIV-1, staphylococcus, salmonella, pseudomonas, streptococcus, and drug-resistant organisms such as MRSA, and H1N1 (swine flu).

The patented 3-in-1 formula of the disinfectant liquid is highly effective in its purpose, while shielding sensitive environmental surfaces from discoloration and damage. As it disinfects it also deodorizes, leaving no unwanted smells or antiseptic odors. 

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OPTIM 33TB Disinfectant Cleaner from SciCan

If you are looking to save time and avoid double work, then Scican OPTIM 33TB cleaner and disinfectant is the perfect choice. The standard dental industry procedure is to usually clean first, and then disinfect afterwards. This product cuts the workload in half by efficiently combining the two activities into one.  Effective cleaning happens simultaneously with a broad-spectrum anti-microbial activity and a short contact time.

This is possible because the  active ingredient is - 0.5% Accelerated Hydrogen Peroxide, based on AHP patented technology. That means your environmental surfaces are sure to be sufficiently and safely decontaminated in a shorter time. Often products with long contact times are less effective because there simply isn't enough time in a dental practice for busy personnel to wait the required time. Fast turn-around rates require faster acting disinfectants, with no need to wait for contact times to be effective.

OPTIM 33TB surface disinfectant is listed with a toxicity of category 4, which is another huge plus. The EPA requires no warning labels for this category, which means no volatile organic compounds, and no added stress on personal health and safety, or environmental responsibility.

Cavicide Disinfectant

Metrex Cavicide Disinfectant is a convenient, ready-to-use, intermediate-level combined cleaner and disinfectant. It is effective on all non-porous surfaces, including plastic, stainless steel, glass, tile, and Formica, making it ideal for cleaning and decontamination of environmental and medical device surfaces.

Cavicide  is highly effective (within 3 minutes) against a number of common organisms, including TB, Staphylococcus aureus and Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). Furthermore, Cavicide Disinfectant is rated as being effective within 2 minutes for the following organisms:

  • Hepatitis B Virus (HBV)
  • Hepatitis C Virus (HCV)
  • Herpes Simplex Virus Types 1 and 2
  • Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV-1)
  • Human Coronavirus (not associated with Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome or SARS)
  • Influenza A2 Virus

For faster, cleaner and more effective control, use Metrex Cavicide Disinfectant spray, or wipes.

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Purell Professional Surface Disinfectant Spray Citrus Scent - 1 Gallon Refill

Purell has been one of America's most well-known household brands for years. Now in the healthcare niche, Purell professional surface disinfectant spray is an all-purpose cleaner that delivers both safety and powerful germ killing technology. The active ingredients are  Ethyl Alcohol and Isopropyl Alcohol. 

In other words, with no harsh fumes or chemicals, Purell Healthcare Surface Disinfectant is ideal for dental offices. Instead of unpleasant antiseptic odors, Purell disinfectant spray leaves only a fresh citrus scent. You get a rapid Germ Kill Time: (30-seconds) while maintaining hospital-grade disinfection for MRSA, VRE and Norovirus.

The professional surface disinfectant spray target makes it super easy and safe to use, with no precautionary statements;  and no hand washing required. What's more, it has demonstrated proven multi-surface performance, across most hard and soft surfaces, making it the perfect product for dental practice environments.  

 

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Monarch Surface Disinfectant Spray (by Air Techniques)

Monarch Surface Disinfectant Spray saves time and money with its handy spray and wipe application. Pre-cleaning is therefore unnecessary, and you still get the fungicidal, bactericidal and virucidal effectiveness within 60 seconds or less. All you need to do is spray it on, and then wipe it off.

Active ingredients Ethyl alcohol as well as the quaternary ammonium formula means that you get a complete one-step disinfection on hard, non-porous surfaces. The EPA registers it as effective against TB, HIV, Hepatitis B & C, MRSA, S. aureus, E. coli, influenza and other clinically relevant organisms in just one minute.

Monarch  is Ethanol based, with a bleach free formula, free of aldehydes, phenols and hormone disruptors. It is also fragrance-free, making it safe and environmentally suitable for a wide range of applications in any dental practice. 

Rapicide OPA/28 High-Level Disinfectant 1 Gallon. Glutaraldehyde-free

Rapicide OPA/28 is a Glutaraldehyde-free, ortho-phthalaldehyde (OPA) based high-level disinfectant designed specifically for a wide range of semi-critical medical devices. It has a maximum reuse period of 28 days.

With only a 10-minute high-level disinfection time, Rapicide is faster than all other OPA disinfectants on the US market. The rapid manual disinfection time provides at least one extra disinfection cycle for every five instruments reprocessed – which is good news in a busy environment.

Rapicide OPA/28 effectively kills TB, HIV2, MRSA, VRE, and Hepatitis Viruses. It comes in a ready and easy to use one gallon bottle, with no mixing or activation required. 

 The shelf-life (unopened) is 2 years, and 75 days once opened. It is highly compatible with most materials, and it is non-corrosive to metal. The solution is colorless, and although it is not odorless, it has a mild and recognizable smell. 

CaviWipes Towelettes

Metrex CaviWipes combine a handy cleaner and disinfectant into one uncomplicated product. These dental surface wipes pre-saturated with CaviCide solution, providing effective removal of dirt and quick broad-spectrum disinfection.

The active ingredients are Isopropyl Alcohol and Dimethyl Benzyl Ammonium Chlorides, and the wipes do not contain aldehydes, phenols, bleach, or other toxic chemicals. Therefore these handy disinfectant surface wipes act as a fungicidal, bactericidal, virucidal and tuberculocidal disinfection in only 3 minutes. 

CaviWipes are recommended for use on a wide range of nonporous surfaces and fixtures. They are designed so that they won’t dry out too quickly, or bunch up when being used. Each CaviWipe comes in the form of a durable, non-woven fully saturated towelette, available both in flat packs and in canisters - select your purchase option here.

 

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PDI bUosE Disinfectant Super Sani-Cloth Wipes - Large 160 Wipes Per Tub

Super Sani-Cloth® Germicidal Disposable Wipe are ideal for daily use in typically fast-paced dental environments. The cleaning and disinfectant properties require short contact times and provide broad coverage protection against microorganisms. 

Super Sani-Cloth disinfecting wipes have a high alcohol (55%) content, making them effective in combating 30 microorganisms in around 2 minutes, including MDROs, blood borne pathogens and viruses: MRSA, VRE, HIV, HBV, HCV. 

PDI Super Sani-Cloth wipes are EPA-registered as an intermediate level disinfectant, and they meet CDC, OSHA, and CMS Tag F441 guidelines. There are 160 wipes per canister, and the deep well lid provides ample space to store and access your next wipe. 

Clorox Healthcare: VersaSure® Cleaner Disinfectant Wipes 

Clorox VersaSure Cleaner and Disinfectant Wipes use an alcohol-free quat solution. The 1-step cleaning and disinfecting wipes are versatile enough to use on common healthcare surfaces with the assurance of broad-spectrum disinfection. They are EPA registered to kill 44 pathogens, including bacteria, viruses and fungi, in two minutes or less. 

The unique low-residue formula enhances quat activity on surfaces and produces no fumes or unpleasant odors. 

VersaSure Cleaner Disinfectant Wipes are durable, low-linting and textured for greater strength. Improved wetness properties in the design provides greater surface coverage compared with some competitors who use quat and quat-alcohol. This provides the assurance that treated surfaces will remain wet for the full contact time, giving you peace of mind.

 

Discount coupon for infection control products

 

The Right Disinfectant Ensures Client and Personnel Safety

Just as it’s important to “start at the top” when sweeping the steps, so it is important to choose your disinfecting and sterilizing product based on your top priorities. Each dentistry practice will have its own quirks and preferences based on what is more important - saving time, money, avoiding harm to the environment, or ensuring the highest possible level of safety. 

This guide has highlighted the products that perform best in all of those spheres. Each of them, individually, has its perfect place - whether as a bulk liquid, or individual sanitary wipes, whether used in a high, medium or low risk area - your disinfecting and sterilizing needs are taken care of. 

Shop all infection control products at better prices.




Our Guide to Shopping Dental Tools Online: Everything You Need to Know

 

Dental Instruments Names & Prices Noble Dental Supplier Banner

 

Modern dental offices rely on a variety of tools for cleanings, restorations surgeries and more. There are so many tools that identifying them can be challenging for beginners. In this guide, we take the time to share the uses and key features of standard professional dental tools that you will encounter when keeping your dental practice inventory stocked and ready for procedures.

Noble Dental Supplies carries all of the dental instruments professionals require, so you can get everything you need in one place, saving you ample time. We pride ourselves on helping practices save their hard-earned money and invest it back into their business and patients. 

We are proud to work with the U.S manufacturer J&J Instruments, which provides some of the highest quality instruments on the market for affordable prices. 

Aspirating Syringe

Aspirating Syringe Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

In medical terms, aspiration is the removal of blood, mucus or other bodily fluids from a patient’s body. An aspirating syringe is simply a syringe with suction capabilities. 

Pulling up on the plunger allows dentists to draw fluids from a  patient's body or quickly check the needle’s position to make sure it is in the right place before injecting local anesthetics. 

What to look for: When shopping for this tool, look for ergonomic designs that give you better grip, dexterity and control.  Look for durable medical-grade materials that will last a long-time. You need a trusted instrument that will not fail during critical procedures such as injecting anaesthetic.  

Compare top aspirating syringe brands

Easy Comparison

Average Price

J&J Instruments

$19.99

Septodont

$50

MilTex

$35

 

Tissue Forceps

Tissue Forcep Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

Forceps are used for manipulating tissue and supporting tissue during surgical incisions or suturing. 

Additionally, they serve as an extra set of fingers for grasping, and they are usually more gentle and less likely to cause injury. 

Tissue forceps have small teeth that help to safely grasp tissue. Minimal pressure on the handle is needed to keep the tissue secure and held in place. 

For this reason, surgeons prefer tissue forceps because they prevent injury from accidentally crushing tissue from applying too much pressure. 

What to look for: Take into account the size of the forceps for your unique operational needs.  In addition, each tissue forcep has teeth of different numbers and sizes. The tip of the forceps may either be serrated or rat-tooth. The best tissue forceps are made from high-quality surgical stainless steel. 

Compare top tissue forcep brands

Easy Comparison

Average Price

J&J Instruments

$8.45

ProDent

$18

MilTex

$20

 

Periodontal Probe

Periodontal Probe Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

Used for checking the health of the periodontium, a periodontal probe is an essential tool for every dental office. Dentists require a reliable, long-lasting instrument that fits comfortably in the hands.

What to look for: The most important aspect of a periodontal probe is the markings on the tip. They must be accurate to precisely measure the health of the periodontium and provide the right diagnosis. Each instrument uses a different marking system, so you will want to carefully check the markings to make sure it is the right choice for you. The tip should be polished and smooth to ensure ease-of-access to subgingival areas.


Compare top tissue periodontal probe brands

Easy Comparison

Average Price

J&J Instruments

From $8.99

Nordent

$26

HuFriedy

$30

 

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Acorn Burnisher

Acorn Burnisher Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

An acorn burnisher is used to smooth amalgam after it condenses, burnish amalgam and generate occlusal anatomy. The acorn-shaped tip carves away at excess amalgam to contour restorations.

What to look for: You’ll want to consider whether you require a double or single-sided tip. The best acorn burnishers have ergonomic designs to increase safety and comfort.

Compare top acorn burnisher brands online

Easy Comparison

Average Price

J&J Instruments

Starting From $8.99

Hu-Friedy

$31+

MilTex

$27+

 

Crown Scissors

Crown Scissors Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

Crown scissors are frequently used to trim the edges of stainless steel preformed crowns. Crowns are preformed and need to be trimmed to fit over the affected areas.

This process requires precision to remove material confidently at the margins of the crown until the desired length is achieved. 

What to look for: Comfort is of primary importance when performing delicate procedures such as trimming crowns. The rings should be comfortable and the size appropriate for your needs. The blade of the scissors may be curved or straight. 

Compare top crown scissors brands

Easy Comparison

Average Price

J&J Instruments

Starting from $5.99

Vantage

$11+

MilTex

$50+

 

Impression Tray

Impression Tray Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

Impression trays are filled with impression materials such as alginate to create accurate dental impressions. To get a good impression of the teeth, you need to use a technique that precisely captures the grooves of the teeth, gums and sulcus. 

Dental practices need to order a variety of stock impression tray sizes to meet their patients’ needs.  A tray should be large enough to fit over all the teeth without touching the soft tissue.

What to look for: There are disposable trays and varieties such as stainless steel that are long-lasting and durable. Accuracy is the most crucial aspect of creating dental impressions, so you will need to depend on high-quality materials that offer dimensional stability. 

Jacquette Scaler

Dental Scaler Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

A jacquette scaler (commonly known as a sickle scaler) is a straight-bladed scaler that is designed for root debridement and the removal of calculus, plaque and other deposits from teeth.  

What to look for: When shopping for dental scalers, look for high-quality medical-grade steel and an easy-grip handle. The handle should be light-weight and may be either round or octagonal. You’ll also want your scaler to stay sharp for an extended period of time. They come with both straight and curved blade edges, and it is good to have both options available. 

Compare top dental scaler brands

Easy Comparison

Average Price

J&J Instruments

Starting From $20

ProDent

$40+

MilTex

$35+

Curette vs Scaler: what's the difference?

The main difference between a curette and a scaler is the shape of the blade. In cross-section, the curette blade is triangular and the scaler blade is semi-circular. A curette is specifically designed to reach the subgingival calculus. The blade of the curette may be placed into the periodontal pocket safely without causing lacerations. 

 

Noble dental discount code of 10% on dental instruments for a limited time

 

Gracey Curette

Gracey Curette Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

In contrast to a universal curette, the gracey curette is a hand instrument that is area-specific, meaning the blade is crafted to perfectly reach a set of teeth or area of the mouth. A gracey curette’s blade has only one cutting edge.  Along with the universal curette, they are one of the main hand instruments used for root planing and scaling.

What to look for: These instruments have to be held for long periods, so you’ll want something light-weight. Gracey curettes come in numbered types, so you will want to consult a gracey curette chart to know which number corresponds to which teeth.

Compare top gracey curette brands

Easy Comparison

Average Price

J&J Instruments

$21

Hu-Friedy

$38

Nordent

$35

 

Hemostat Instrument

Mosquito Forceps Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

The primary function of a hemostat is to grasp tissue or bone, but it can be used for general purposes also. The end is serrated with interlocking teeth. When needed, it may be locked during surgical procedures, providing a firm yet gentle grip.

What to look for: You can choose between straight or curved types, and it is good to keep both handy. Look for hemostats with rings that fit comfortably in your fingers. There are many different types of hemostats featuring different tips, and we keep a large selection so that you can choose the right hemostat for your needs.

Compare hemostat brands

Easy Comparison

Average Price

J&J Instruments

$8.45

Nordent

$45

Hu Friedy

$60

 

Amalgam Carrier

Amalgam Carrier Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

Amalgam carriers are hand instruments designed to fill up dental cavities with amalgam. Their tubular tips can act as syringes transporting the amalgam to the cavity. Pressing on a specialized lever activates a piston that deposits the amalgam deep inside the cavity. 

What to look for: Amalgam carriers may be single or double-ended. You’ll want to look for something light-weight and easy to manage. The inner tube that contains amalgam can be made with Teflon, but surgical steel is the best material.

Compare top amalgam carrier brands

Easy Comparison

Average Price

J&J Instruments

$20

Hu-Friedy

$60

MilTex

$55

 

Dental Excavator

Dental Excavator Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

Dental excavators are one of the most versatile hand instruments on your tray. They are used to remove damaged tissues in cavities, temporary cement and provisional crowns. 

What to look for: There are many different types of excavators, and the tips can be spoon, leaf or ball shaped. The devices are either right or left-oriented, so make sure that you know the hand-dominance (left or right) of the staff in your office and purchase accordingly. 

Compare top dental excavator brands

Easy Comparison

Average Price

J&J Instruments

$10

Hu-Friedy

$29

MilTex

$30

Cavity Liner 

Cavity Liner Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

Designed for accurate placement of liners, these tools have a small-ball shaped working end. Excellent craftsmanship is required to create a tool that you can trust to precisely transport and apply flowable materials such as liner.  

What to look for: Look out for the size of the instrument and seek out ergonomic designs that are light-weight and easy to hold. You may need a single or double-sided instrument depending on your dental staff’s needs. 

Compare top cavity liner brands

Easy Comparison

Average Price

J&J Instruments

$4.45

Pomee

$8

Hu-Friedy

$32

 

Cement Spatula 

Cement Spatula Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

A cement spatula is an excellent tool for mixing and preparing cement, filling materials and impression materials. The working end features a large surface area, and it can be both single and double-ended.

What to look for: You’ll want an instrument with a ribbed handle for a secure grip. It also needs to be made of high-quality non-rusting stainless steel. The working ends come in all sizes, so you’ll want to consider which cement spatula is the best size for you. 

Compare top cement spatula brands

Easy Comparison

Average Price

J&J Instruments

$6.45

Nordent

$25

Hu-Friedy

$29

Cheek Retractor

Cheek Retractor Price Discount by Noble Dental Supply

The function of cheek retractors  is to keep a patient’s cheek tissue away from working areas during dental procedures ranging from surgeries to cosmetic teeth whitening. They help dentists to get a full view of the patient’s mouth. 

What to look for: Cheek retractors may be made of autoclavable materials, or they can be disposable. In general, they are either made of plastic or stainless steel. We recommend choosing medical grade-stainless steel for durability and reusability as they are easy to disinfect and are cost efficient. 

Compare top cheek retractor brands

Easy Comparison

Average Price

J&J Instruments

$11.45

Surgimac

$15

Hu-Friedy

$38

 

Shopping Dental Instruments

You need reliable tools that you can trust to perform medical operations safely and maximize patient comfort. If you want to save money on your inventory, you don’t need to settle for using tools of substandard quality. 

Our professional dental instruments are made of premium medical-grade steel, and we never compromise on quality. We search the world for the best dental tools, thoroughly reviewing every manufacturer and brand that we work with. 

For over 40 years, we have firmly committed ourselves to sourcing affordable tools that are just as good and even outcompete the name brand instruments. Our priority is to support practices that work hard every day caring for their communities. 

We are a family-owned business and we value working with people to help them solve their problems and run a highly-efficient and smart dental practice business. We are fully stocked, and you can re-order supplies quickly and easily. 

Throughout the entire ordering process, we’ll help you manage your account and optimize your inventory for best pricing, quality and reliable delivery. If you give us your current inventory invoices, we guarantee we can help you save, and give you extra savings to reinvest in your patients and business.

What You Can Do to Improve Your Dental Practice

Improving a dental practice blog header for Noble Dental Supply

What we’ll discuss 

  1. Prioritize Patient Experience: on empathy, education and building loyalty. 

  2. Critical Technology to Maximize Efficiency: on inventory management, dental supply optimization, appointment scheduling and recall systems. 

  3. Investing in Building and Retaining a Team: on skill development, providing feedback and measuring performance. 

When looking into practical (and realistic) ways of improving your dental practice starting this month, your strategy should be geared for incremental improvement, developed around specific strengths and weaknesses. 

We’ve been working with dental offices for over 40 years, and from continuous feedback, built out an intro list of the most effective ways to scale profit, attract clients and retain quality staff. 

We’ll cover key areas of focus that can help you to direct your growth strategy and solve pertinent problems. In 2021, the following focal points can guide your next steps when making changes to improve your core business operations.

 

Prioritize Overall Patient Experience 

Health care systems of all types are prioritizing end-to-end patient experience which often begins with increasing patient engagement and good communication. A positive patient experience is the best measure of your success.

Helping your patients and having practice autonomy is the reason you started your dental office, so you should make it a focal point when planning any changes to improve your business. 

Build on empathy and communication skills

Building rapport with patients and expressing empathy are essential for developing positive patient-dentist relationships. In a profession where phobias are common, empathy helps to reduce patient anxiety, and increase patient satisfaction and also treatment adherence. 

Empathy and communication may be improved by providing your staff with the right educational resources and training. Often, communication skills are overlooked during training, so focusing on these skills will make your onboarding process more thorough and educational. 

Another aspect of empathy to address is compassion fatigue or secondary stress trauma. This is workplace emotional or physical exhaustion that ultimately hinders an employee’s ability to empathize with patients. Colloquially, it is known as workplace burnout. Compassion fatigue is more common in caretaking positions that require continuous engagement. 

For your team, empathizing with patients at work can also be emotionally draining, even for the most resilient staff members. Indeed, dental professionals witness the stress and discomfort of their patients regularly, internalizing high amounts of stress.

As a result, it is vital to develop a workplace culture that encourages rest and self-care so that your staff has the energy they need to take care of patients empathetically.  One way you can help your staff is by educating them about workplace burnout and ways to stay mentally healthy and avoid overworking yourself - this will build loyal, long-term staff members as they’ll feel appreciated.

Educate your patients

Providing informative educational materials that highlight the importance of getting treatments will give your patients the information they need to make health decisions. Consider developing educational resources in multiple forms such as waiting room visuals, pamphlets, emails, photographs, and videos. 

After-visit summaries (AVS) are a  key element of patient education. An AVS is a document given to the patient following a treatment that provides actionable information with clear instructions. It also contains a summary of the visit and the date and time of the next appointment.


When developing your educational content, be mindful of your audience. In general, your material should have the following characteristics:

  • Written in easily understandable terms and rich with visuals

  • Scientific and authoritative (but simple)

  • Culturally-competent

  • Created with your specific audience in mind (ex: what your practice is mainly focused on)

  • Based on oral health guidelines

 

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Earn patient loyalty

Customer loyalty expresses how likely any patient that comes into your office will keep coming back for recurring care. It results from patient satisfaction with your care and services. Remember that loyal patients will recommend friends and family. 72% of surveyed dentists state that positive word-of-mouth referrals are their strongest method for obtaining new patients. 

Collecting data is one way to seek insights about your patient retention rate. For example, you can calculate your active patient number. This is the number of patients who received care in the past 18 months. Use this data to calculate annual patient attrition, the rate at which patients become inactive each year, to then tune dental marketing efforts on both patient acquisition and retention.

The changes you implement must be targeted. Bolster efforts in scheduling your next appointment before a patient leaves the office. This easily helps patients remember their annual oral care checkups (at the very least). 

By gathering basic data about patient retention and actioning on patient experience, you can improve the number of loyal clients that come back to you on-time. Try to look at your office through the eyes of your clients and consider all aspects of their experience under your care. 

 

Maximize Dental Practice Management Efficiency

Efficiency can be defined as the successful completion of processes using the least amount of time, resources, and labor. Increasing the efficiency of your dental clinic is a life-time task and necessitates a realistic long-term strategy. Below are tried and tested tips you may consider. 

Automate mundane processes with technology & consulting

Automating processes using software helps you spend more time building relationships with your patients and less time doing repetitive tasks. Just about every monotonous task that regularly occurs in the dental business can be automated with the right dental office practice management services. Consider the benefits of investing in technological solutions that will save your staff time and save you money.

Utilize inventory management software solutions

Efficiently managing your supplies is necessary to balance the  fluctuating forces of supply and demand. Supply management software supports you and purchasing staff by tracking all aspects of data related to ordering and supply storage. 

The right software will help you reduce time spent counting inventory, avoid shipping fees from last-minute ordering, and prevent overstocking. When considering implementing an inventory management solution, consider the immediate problems you’re aiming to solve.

Here are top examples of medical supply management software:

Implement appointment scheduling software, yesterday.

It’s best to schedule longer appointments that will require more focus and attention in the early hours of the morning

Self-service appointment software allows patients to schedule appointments online at their own convenience. The dental business is highly competitive, and Smart practices are rapidly adopting digital self-scheduling software to gain competitive advantage (ex: increase new patient flow and return customers).

Digital self-scheduling increases the ease-of-access for your patients. New patients in particular are seeking an easy solution when researching dentists in their area. Your potential patients want to save time during their busy lives and make decisions quickly. Keep in mind that easy dental appointment scheduling allows you to collect email and text info so that you can send reminders via email and text of their next appointment.

Here are some great scheduling apps local offices we spoke with utilize on their websites: 

When scheduling your days consider your procedure goals, and fill time slots with a variety of different procedures (major, tertiary, basic etc.) One way to optimize efficiency is to use block scheduling, a method of scheduling that involves reserving blocks of time for certain operations in a way that meets your production goals.

To get started, it is best to schedule longer appointments that will require more focus and attention in the early hours of the morning. Less intensive care should be reserved for the afternoon and evening hours. Keep with the block schedule method unless a time slot does not fill up a couple days out.

Add on a dental recall management system

Recall management systems are a series of automated texts, calls, emails, or mail that help your patients to remember to make it to their appointments. 

This software benefits your practice by providing professional and customized follow-up messaging that highlights your brand’s unique voice. Customization helps to keep your messaging human and relatable despite the services being automated. 

Importantly, many recall management systems allow patients to customize their notifications to choose the contact method that they like the most. Have a look at:

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Work with the right dental supply company

On average, offices purchase from 4 suppliers to cover all of your inventory needs. Typically we see inefficiencies in continuous non-bulk purchases, which eat up thousands of dollars yearly, which aren’t noticeable when purchased piecemeal. 

The Noble Dental Supply team has ample experience working with dental offices’ inventory and invoicing spreadsheets and software to  find high-quality supplies at lower prices to maximize your profits. Our purchasing & supply specialists help local practices save between 30% to 50% in getting like and better quality products with factory-direct discounts.

Best-practice advice is that your inventory costs should not exceed 5-6% of overall collections. If you are paying too much for supplies, you may want to consider working with a new dental supplier and investing in software that helps your team to manage the complexity of supply ordering, usage, and storage. 

 

Build up Your Professional Team

A passionate and dedicated team will naturally seek to improve their skills and also develop positive rapport with your patients - which will keep them coming back.

Your team will function optimally when members feel that their job is fulfilling, supportive and conducive to their development and growth as a dental professional. 

Invest in education and skill development

Investing in education will keep you and your team committed to growing and developing as professionals. 

It is necessary to give your team the resources that they need to advance in their careers. Continuing education credits are being required for more and more staff besides dentists. Keeping up to date with the latest developments and strategies for success in the profession is necessary to help your employees do their jobs well. 

Continually training your team helps them follow your unique systems set in place to increase  productivity. Developing your management team is a key strategy to make sure that your employees are getting properly trained. Leaders need to have the skills to communicate workplace processes effectively and serve as role models who show how to do things properly. 

To invest in your team, identify the key skills that need improvement. If you can, bring in experts on a particular skill to teach your team. Hard skills such as mastering software or new medical devices can often be taught by a vendor. 

While continuing education is not required for dental managers. You can also benefit from learning more, and there are resources available to improve your skills as well such as online dental management classes. For example, The New York State Dental Associate provides an online course on risk management. Investing in education will keep you and your team committed to growing and developing as professionals. 

A great example of full service staff training can be taken from Cambeo Dental, which provides a robust online training tool filled with content which includes Osha compliance, employee compliance training, clinical compliance and soft skills training. Cambeo helps staff understand how to increase new patients, eliminating no shows, effective patient communication and more. 

Provide feedback and measure employee performance

Employees enjoy frequent feedback and the feeling of certainty that they are meeting the expectations of their position. 

Providing feedback about performance should be an objective process that focuses on key performance indicators influencing your office's productivity and efficiency. In addition, the feedback should provide clear guidelines for how your hygienists, dental assistants and front office staff can improve their performance and meet your service standards.

Hiring supervisors that have positive traits such as clear communication, honesty, forgiveness, and empathy will help your employees to have satisfactory appraisal processes. During employee evaluations, supervisors and staff can work together to develop measurable and obtainable goals. Lastly, rewarding your people for improvements is essential for recognition and appreciation.

In order for your team members to develop their skills and grow professionally, they must be given clear and consistent feedback. Employees enjoy frequent feedback and the feeling of certainty that they are meeting the expectations of their position. 

Consider implementing a well-established employee performance appraisal strategy to create healthy avenues of communication between members of your team. For example, the 360* feedback method can help to develop a culture of team-work and accountability. 

On Improving Your Dental Practice in 2021

No matter what aspects you seek to improve, the most important advice is to continually optimize repetitive tasks and apply what you learn in the process. Running a successful dental practice does not happen overnight, so have patience and develop a vision of the future which aligns with your goals. Even minor shifts in operation can cause a cascade of positive changes. 

An optimistic attitude can carry you and your staff forward into the New Year. We know that the past year was tough for healthcare professionals, and  we want to do everything in our power to make running your practice easier, rewarding, and more affordable. Thank you for caring for people during these difficult times and being heroes. Your commitment to providing quality care is admirable, and we hope you have a fantastic New Year.

If you’re looking to save more on quality dental supplies that don’t break the bank, please call our office and we’ll help you have quality, predictable and on time supplies - one less thing to worry about while running a smart dental practice. 

Noble dental discount code of 10% with smiling lips

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 Blogs that dental professionals should follow

Brought to you by Noble Dental Supplies

As a dental professional, staying informed and up-to-date is a crucial part of the job. Unfortunately, the amount of content available today is staggering. By narrowing your reading list to a few core thought leaders, you’ll be able maximize your time and influence without missing out.

These days, no matter who you are, the amount of content available in your area of expertise is practically limitless. Dentistry is no exception. There are podcasts, white papers, case studies, and more. To keep it simple, we’ll start with blogs, one of the simplest and most accessible forms of content.

You’ll find that subscribing to, or simply reading, blog content a few times a week will unlock other content sources. Rather than clutter your inbox by subscribing to several things at once, let a few top-shelf content sources open the door to others.

You’ll find a number of paths to explore by keeping the short list below. Thought leaders like the five bloggers below have a way of synergizing their collective output via their content.

  1. https://www.mydentalconsultant.com/blog

Kevin Tighe, Managing Partner, provides “vital dental practice management pearls.” The blog features “dozens of articles on topics from staff embezzlement to recommended financial policy to tips on increasing hygiene production.”

  1. https://www.deliveringwow.com/podcastblog/

Dr. Holmes knows that “if (she) can teach dentists to be better leaders, then they will be more profitable, will have inspired teams, and patients who are raving fans.”

 

  1. https://www.agd.org/

Also known as The Daily Grind, this blog offers readers a glimpse into the life of a general dentist practicing today. Visitors can use the site to keep up with modern dental trends and the site even provides guides on dental success and team building in your dental office. Academy of General Dentistry also has a very regular posting schedule, so it’s worth checking it daily.

  1. https://www.thedentalgeek.com/

Not “your ordinary dental industry blog,” the Dental Geek offers content that’s unique, insightful, and sometimes controversial in the field of dentistry. As they like to say, they “eat, sleep, and breathe oral health. 

  1. https://www.dentaltown.com/blogs/list/all/active

A broad community of dentists, dental marketers, and dental industry specialists. If you’re already a “townie” (as they refer to their community), keep exploring their daily refresh of content. If you’re not, start by browsing their list of active blogs covering topics that include clinical, marketing/advertising, practice growth, and tons more.

There are hundreds of online sources of dental content available. By finding a few that work for you and keeping up with them, you can continue to grow your knowledge – and your practice.

7 Dental Trends In 2020 You Should Try To Keep Up With

Most people dread a visit to the dentist. Still, that hasn’t stopped dentists and dental experts from continually trying to find ways to make people’s lives easier. Dental industry trendsare always on the verge of a new breakthrough, which makes going tothe dentist just a bit less terrifying.

There has been a significant focus on the patient’s convenience and comforts, when it comes to healthcare services and dentistry. Having an ailment and having to go visit a doctor is painful enough, patients hate any further complications. Here are somedental industry trends in 2020 that you should look out for.

  1.      Focus on Convenience

Advances in the dental industry are designed to make patient’s lives easier. For starters, patients can now book appointments online and fill out questionnaires in the comfort of their own home. Patients can take their time filling out their personal information forms and not to mention pay online or via your phone.This new style is designed to make the process fast and simple for both patient and dentist.

  1.      Emotional Dentistry

This composes of a set of techniques and approaches that focus on the mental aspect of undergoing major dental procedures. Now, patients can have virtual mockups and digital photos created to help them envision what they would look like once a procedure is over. This helps put their fears to rest and gives them the needed confidence to undergo such procedures. Patients can even experiment with different smiles and shapes for their teeth before undergoing a procedure.

  1.      3D Printing

3D printing has taken the world by storm over the last few years, influencing several industries. Using 3D printing has resulted in significant cost reduction and much time saved from the production process of crowns, veneers, aligners, and other products.

When a practice obtains an in-house 3D printer, it no longer needs to rely on third-party labs and companies to develop their work. Buying a 3D Printer is an investment that will show long-term beneficiary results.

 

  1.      Laser Technology

One of the most important dental trends this year is laser technology. Due to its various and unique applications, it is also the most exciting and in-demand trend in the dental industry today. For starters, it can be used in teeth whitening and provide excellent results at higherefficiency. It is also used in removing lesions and tooth decay, altering 

the shape of the gums, getting rid of bacteria in root canals, and a host of other functions. The biggest benefit of this technology is that there is no need to give the patient anesthesia. It eases the patient’s pain and makes the procedures much smoother. The laser also sterilizes the gums without additional products reducing the risk of infection.

  1.       Leveraging Social Media

Dentists who are looking to attract new patients must invest in their online image, as this helps promote their services to larger numbers. Regular posts pertaining to your work will always yield excellent results.

  1.      Artificial Intelligence

AI can be used to handle any large chunks of data pertaining to your patients or the clinic. This helps dentists efficiently handle their patients and also helps them keep up to date on relevant patient patterns to facilitate the treatment, not to mention research papers that a dentist has to keep track of.

  1.      Automated Management Software

Automation technology can help a dentist handle the workload and simplify it by automatically notifying and confirming appointments with patients. It also helps with scheduling social media posts and other digital marketing efforts. This kind of streamlining helps increase a practice’s return on investment, since the entire work process would be much more organized.

Another great way to increase proficiency in your business is by placing orders for all your dental supply needs atNoble Dental Supplies. We offer high-quality dental supplies across a wide range of categories that are 30-50% below the expensive name-brand dental supply products. You can even login and reorder your stock in just a few seconds by using our fast reorder feature on the website!

 

  

Tooth Gems Are Making A Comeback, Could This Be A Dangerous – Beauty Trend?

Cosmetic dentistry has become one of the fastest growing industries in today’s modern day and accessory trends have accompanied it hand in hand.Tooth gems, being the newest craze, has taken the dentistry practice to another level.Not only are dentist transforming smiles but they are adding sparkle.

Now, you might be asking yourself, what are tooth gems?

Essentially, they are tiny jewels glued to the teeth that function as an accent for your grin. Tooth gems are only a few millimeters wide, but they can really enhance your megawatt smile. The trend popped up in the 90s, but it has made a comeback in recent years with a number of celebrities sporting them.

As more and more young patients consider getting themselves a tooth gem, we would like to remind them that these could also potentially be the most dangerous beauty trend ever.

What are tooth gems?

A tooth gem is a small rhinestone jewel attached to the surface of a tooth using an adhesive. Some are small stones in the center of the tooth and some are jewel-encrusted caps that people elect to place over their teeth. Some people like to go for the grill, which is a decorative cover that fits over most of the person’s front teeth.

The gems are temporary – there’s no drilling involved – but permanent issues can arise if they are not installed properly.

The Bonding Process

A more lastingprocess called the diamond bonding process involves permanently attaching one or more diamonds to the teeth in a manner that is similar to dental bonding for a filling. The diamonds can be placed up front where everyone can see them, slightly towards the back or on the bottom where they are less noticeable. While the embellishment is considered to be permanent, it can be taken off with dental tools.

 

Molly Bennet, the owner of Identity Body Piercing in Chicago, said that tooth gems fall into a ‘gray area’ between the cosmetics and tattoo-and piercing industries. Many people consider their installation to be a cosmetic procedure because it doesn’t involve drilling holes into the tooth. According to a spokesperson, the American Dental Association doesn’t currently have a policy on tooth gems or jewelry.

 

Services from the Beverly Hills-based dentist Dr. Anjali Rajpal come at a higher price, but her clients are willing to pay a premium for peace of mind. Dr. Rajpal’s services range anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars per tooth, depending on the type and number of jewels. She says that she wasn’t trained to apply tooth gems in dental school, “but because it’s on the teeth, I feel it’s much better handled by someone like me who knows what they’re working with.”She also claims the placement is superficial as it causes no damage to the tooth. Patients can brush their teeth like normal and practice normal oral hygiene.

Beauty boutiques like GBY Beauty in California offer tooth gem services and according to their website, they use 100% Swarovski crystals. They offer diamonds upon request for a temporary and painless application and as a budget-friendly alternative, there are also inexpensive DIY kits available. These are comparable to nail gem kits, and they include adhesive and various adornments.

The Cost

One real diamond inserted on a tooth costs about $2000 depending on the size and quality of the diamond. Dr. Rajpal places one diamond as well as provides custom-built grills. These fancy full-mouth gears are jewel-encrusted plates that sit on the teeth. Unlike diamond bonding, grills require two dental visits, since digital impressions are taken of the mouth and sent to a lab for creation. Then, the patient returns to have them fitted. The cost of a full grill is between $10,000 to $150,000 depending on the number of jewels and how complex the design is for the grill.

The Risks

With a gem, there is a possibility that the person may develop a discolored area on the surface of the tooth. Over time, jeweled gems and caps may wear away the enamel, increasing the risk of tooth decay and infection. Without proper dental care, such as regular brushing and flossing, dental jewelry offers convenient hiding places for stray food particles and harmful bacteria. Finally, many people apply gems to their teeth using home DIY kits. This increases the chance of damaging the tooth and causing complications, such as tooth decay.

Still, while these gems may be small, they can also lead to big problems if they aren’t properly applied. And it’s hard to know every ingredient in the adhesive. As a result, they can be potentially harmful for use in the mouth or on your teeth.

Dentists have shared their concerns about the risks. “It’s never safe or healthy to put foreign objects on your teeth,” says SmileDirectClub’s Chief Clincal Officer Dr. Jeffrey Sulitzer, DMD. “This can negatively affect the ability to chew or eat – or you could accidently even swallow it.”

 

With dental grills, the risks are even more serious. Most grills are crafted using base metals, and as a result they may cause an allergic reaction or irritate the gums. If worn longer than recommended, a grill can damage the surface of the teeth, removing enamel and exposing your teeth to bacteria.

If you’re looking for high-quality dental supplies across a wide range of categories that are 30-50% below the expensive name-brand dental supply products, head on over to Noble Dental Supplies. Offeringfree shipping for orders over $500!

 

 

Dental Care and Coronavirus (COVID-19)

As the coronavirus restrictions continue to ease all over the world, it’s now possible to access a wider range of dental services within your local community.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has updated the Interim Infection Prevention and Control Guidance for Dental Setting During the COVID-19 Response with additional guidance and clarification for dental care during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Updates include additional guidance on physical distancing and how to respond to SARS-CoV-2 exposures among dental healthcare personnel and patients. This is aligned to the updated guidance with CDC’s Interim Infection Prevention and Control Recommendations for Patients with Suspected or Confirmed Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in healthcare settings, regarding fever and recommended PPE during patient encounters and including aerosol generating procedures.

Interim guidance is based on what is currently known about dental care in light of COVID-19and its transmission and severity. If you’re looking for the most up-to-date information about infection prevention and control practices, you can find it on CDC’s COVID-19 page. As more information becomes available, CDC will update the guidance. 

The guidelines have also been reorganized into two sections: recommended infection prevention and control practices for routine dental healthcare delivery and recommended practices when providing dental healthcare for a patient with suspected or confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection.

Dental settings should balance the need to provide necessary services while minimizing risk to patients and dental healthcare personnel. They should stay informed and regularly consult with the state or local health departments for region-specific information and recommendations, and should monitor trends in local case counts and deaths, especially for populations at higher risk for severe illnesses.

Oral health has a great impact on our general health, and vice versa, so caring for both during this crisis is critical. This blog will help answer some of your questions about dental care and coronavirus.

Visits to the dentist

While measures are being put into place by cities and states on how they respond to this pandemic, based on federal recommendations and those presented by the CDC, dental offices are getting creative on how they still see their patients. Here are some policies being put into place by dental offices around the country to keep patients and dental staff safe:

-          No waiting rooms
Your dental office has likely already closed their waiting areas. Instead, when you arrive at the dentist, you are taken straight back to a treatment room.  This is why it’s very important to call ahead before your appointment to understand what protocols they have in place. This means toys and magazines will also be removed and your wait times should be less!

-          Treatment and checkout take place in the treatment room
Dental offices are trying to minimize movement and contamination in their offices so everything will be brought directly to you at your dental visit.

-          No-touch door handles
Some dental offices are even installing foot handles on their front doors so you don’t have to touch the handle to the door when you arrive.

-          Sanitation teams
Dental offices are already very sanitary. They consistently wipe down areas and use gloves when they are working on your dental treatment, but they are increasing these efforts even more in light of the coronavirus outbreak.

-          Patient screenings
Your dentist will likely ask you a few questions before your visit about where you have traveled or if you know anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19. If you have been exposed to the virus and have an immediate dental need, don’t letthat keep you from calling your dental office to find out what you need to do.

Caring for your dental health, especially when you are sick or there is a serious illness like this going around, is so important for your overall health.

How will dentists handle dental emergencies?

Dental offices across the U.S. will be ready to accept dental emergencies at their office at this time. They want to help relieve hospital emergency departments who will already be swamped.

Dental emergencies include:

-          Cracked or chipped tooth

-          Knocked-out tooth

-          Tissue injury

-          Tooth abscess (or associated toothache)

What should I do about planned dental visits and treatments during this time?

Did you have a dental visit planned this week or in the coming weeks but are unsure of what to do next? Call your dental office to find out what they would recommend. They will be able to provide recommendations about your current treatment status and the state of coronavirus precautions in your area.

Should I visit the dentist if I’m a senior?

Unfortunately, seniors and those with compromised immune systems are at an increased risk of complication if exposed to thecoronavirus and have been advised to stay home during this pandemic.

Sourcing personal protective equipmentand other infection control suppliesduring the COVID-19 pandemic are super simple, thanks to Noble Dental Supplies. We’re also offering free shipping for orders over $500, so place your order for cleaning supplies and other equipment at discounted rates today.

 

  

What Are The Advantages And Uses Of 3M Dental Cements?

For nearly 50 years, dental professionals around the world have relied on 3M Dental Cements to keep their patients smiling. Their easy-to-use dental cements and accessories are formulated to provide strong, reliable bonds with excellent aesthetics and reduced post-op sensitivity for virtually any indirect restoration procedure.

What are Dental Cements?

Cementation is a key and fundamental part of dental treatment as it guarantees long-lasting prostheses and less invasive restorations. Some of the most important factors in cementation are bond strength, utility and simplicity.

Cements are materials that slide on surfaces and harden in a short time, achieving a high resistance. It’s very important to be able to achieve optimum retention, strength and sealing between the restorative material and the tooth.

Why are dental cements important?

Dental cements are important because they allow friction between the tooth and the restoration. When considering what cement best fits a tooth it is important to take into consideration each of their characteristics.

What are the advantages of 3M dental cements?

Over the years, 3M has evolved and developed a wide variety of cements depending on various indications, starting with products for temporary or permanent cementation. With the 3M range of cements, the number of steps and products are reduced.

Dentists must make sure to follow the manufacturer’s directions for each type of cement, in terms of mixing, using the correct ratios and subjecting it to the correct temperatures. There are five types of dental cement:

-          Zinc-oxide eugenol

-          Zinc phosphate

-          Polycarboxylate

-          Glass ionomer

-          Composite resin

In this article, we’ll discuss in detail about theuses of 3m dental cements.

KetacCem Plus Automix

KetacCem Plus offers a highly developed dispensing formula, which is a glass ionomer with resin that contains all the advantages of an ionomer (high adhesion). This kind of cement helps avoid short sealing periods. Its simple and effective handling makes it a 

favorite. It’s easy to remove with a light blow, its color is white between A1 and A2 and its Automix format with mixing tips generates the perfect mixture.

It has very high strength and is recommended to be applied in:

  •          Crowns
  •          Bridges
  •          Inlays
  •          Metal or porcelain inlays
  •          Endodontic posts and metal orthodontic materials

Some of the main features of this cement are:

-          It can be mixed with paste easily

-          It’s fortified with advanced technology

-          It offers simple and hygienic handling

-          It sets with a light blow, allowing removal of leftovers comfortably

The KetacCem Plus is easy to use and is also one of the most widely used glass ionomer cements in the world. It helps practitioner’s preserve the natural state of the tooth. 

RelyXUnicem 2 Automix

RelyXUnicem 2 Automix is a self-adhesive resin cement. Its superior quality and performance make it easy to use. It is available in a Clicker dispenser or as an Automix Syringe. There have been several clinical studies that support the success offered by its cementation and the product has been on the market for 18 years.

A major advantage of this cement is that its Ph levels remains absolutely neutral, even after a long time.

Some of the main features of this cement are:

-          Layer thickness of 13 µm

-          Reduced color options

-          Low degree of adhesion

-          Ceramic can fragment due to water absorption

Due to the sheer force of the previous elements, this product is recommended to cement practically any restoration in the clinic with two exceptions –Veneers&Maryland Bridges. However, there are other 3M alternatives for these exceptions which we willdiscuss in detail in the next section below.

It is also possible to cement fiber posts or metal posts effortlessly by directly dispensing and filling the entire channel. All practitioners have to do is take the post to the right 

place. If it’s a metal post, they will wait for the chemical setting reaction whereas in a fiber post they will need to wait for two and a half minutes and follow it up by 20 seconds of light.

RelyX Ultimate

The RelyX Ultimate dental cement is a classic resin cement with an industry-leading bond strength that requires fewer steps. Its main features include:

-          Layer thickness of 12 µm

-          Increased strength of the ceramic

-          Shorter working time

-          High wear resistance

-          Color stability

-          Leading initiator technology

-          Natural fluorescence

On one side, as it is a classic resin, it can be used with all types of materials but the practitioner must always take into account previous adhesion protocol. Before using it, an adhesive like Scotchbond Universal must be used since the dental adhesives are of the light setting type and a second element is needed to convert them. With Scotchbond, the double-setting process is obtained because RelyX Ultimate contains chemical setting activator for Scotchbond Universal.

While on the other side, take note that this adhesive must be light cured, taking care of the prosthesis’ adjustments. It is not a good idea to light cure the adhesive on the tooth though as it would not cross the prosthesis, the cement or the adhesive. It is recommended to light-cure the adhesive on the tooth or use RelyX Ultimate which will cure the adhesive in both places and guarantee that there is no displacement. RelyX Ultimate shows maximum cementing strength with only one layer of cement for perfect prosthetics.

Good cementation means a job well done and a satisfied patient, which is why 3M has developed these products that have excellent bonding strength and high performance – from glass ionomers to resins and fiberglass posts.

Browse through all kinds of dental cements only at Noble Dental Supplies. We use our extensive knowledge in sourcing to bring dentists high-quality dental supplies across a wide range of categories that are 30-50% below the other name-brand dental supply products. We even offer free shipping for every order above $500!

 

 

Dental Air Polishers: Choosing The Best For Your Clinic

Polishing and cleaning are the most common duties of dental hygienists, and selecting the right dental polishers can maximize efficiency and contribute to a positive patient experience.

For routine dental visit and other practices have added Dental air polishers or Air Prophylaxis Machines to their procedures. These systems use high-pressure air to propel special powders at a patient’s teeth.

The abrasion action of the powder provides a high quality polish. When selecting dental air polisher, it is imperative to understand the types of powders that they are compatible with. It is also important to be properly trained in air polishing in order to select patients who are good candidates before beginning the treatment.

Let’s take a look at how mechanical polishing compares to air polishing and what to look for when selecting a polisher or ceramic polishing burs.

Air polishing vs. mechanical polishing

Air polishing has been used for almost 50 years. In contrast to air-abrasive techniques, air polishing employs a mixture of air, powder and water. This fine jet is directed toward the tooth surface at an air pressure of 4-8 bars and a water pressure of 1-5 bar, leading to the removal of surface deposits.

Each method has some distinct advantages; however, there are some contra-indicators you should be aware of if you opt for air polishing. As opposed to mechanical polishing, air polishing uses a lighter hand-piece and ultrasonic scaler. It generates pressured air, abrasive powder and saltwater to remove plaque. It has been in use in dentistry since the late 1870s, according to information from the Journal of Dental Hygiene.

The advantages of air polishing include reduced time, less fatigue and efficient stain removal. Another distinct advantage of mechanical polishing is that it can be easier on gingival issues without worrying about contra-indications.

However, there are some distinct negative components associated with air polishing that must be taken into consideration. A practitioner should not use air polishers on patients with:

-          a sodium-restricted diet

-          Hypertension

-          Respiratory illnesses

-          Infectious diseases

-          Addison’s or Cushing’s diseases

One other disadvantage of air polishing is that some clinicians believe that air polishing can be too abrasive on the gingival tissues.

Integrating it into your practice

Integration of air polishing offers the oral health professional new options and an enhanced approach to patient care. When determining the most effective technologies for individualized care, consideration must include evidence of oral disease, presence and level of biofilm and stain, and overall health status.

Healthy individuals with stain may be better candidates for traditional supra-gingival air polishing using sodium bicarbonate. On the other hand, patients with gingival disease may be better served by sub-gingival air polishing using glycine. Research has indicated that the use of sub-gingival air polishing prior to calculus removal has an advantageous approach to the dental hygiene process of care.

What to look for in Dental Polishers

Disposable dental polishers are typically more efficient, although there are several elements to consider when working with them.

Pay attention to the shank

If you are using a disposable plastic shank, you should make sure it does not bend. If you aren’t using one, you should remember to include time to mount the other one in your preparation time. Pay close attention to the feeling of the instrument. If they are connected improperly, there will be a wobbly sensation. As a result, the bonding of the tip to the shank is not stable. Consider getting one that comes pre-mounted with no need for cleaning or reprocessing work.

The advantages of simplicity

Be aware of how many steps your polishing process involves. In many cases, disposable polishing systems have several steps involved and it may not be clear when each one is appropriate.

Examine the neck of your dental polishers

If the neck is tampered, it cannot provide a fine appearance or better visibility as well. It may be necessary to try samples of a product to experience the difference. Using an oversized neck can hinder your visibility and straight necks sometimes present the same problems.

Dentistry and dental hygiene change by the minute. Oral health-care providers are constantly pushing to keep current with technology and research. Revisiting polishing options is beneficial to patients and clinicians. Familiarity with aerosol shield reduction devices or the difference between air polishing powders is paramount.

Air polishing is a high-quality, efficacious and efficient service. However, to obtain successful clinical outcomes, we must:

-          Have the proper equipment for our patients and ourselves

-          Learn to recognize and properly interpret the signals within clinical guidelines that assist us in patient selection

-          Periodically revisit the assortment of air polishing equipment/powders and apply evidence-based decision-making to clinical decision-making.

Get the best price for air polishers for your practice, only at Noble Dental Supplies. We’ve used our extensive knowledge in sourcing, in order to bring dentists high-quality dental supplies across a wide range of categories that are 30-50% below the expensive name-brand dental supply products. Browse through our range of dental supplies and get free shipping for orders over $500!

 

 

The Latest Advancements in Cosmetic Dentistry

With a growth rate of 200% since 1996, cosmetic dentistry is the fastest-growing field in the dental industry. In the U.S alone, it is a 4 Billion dollar industry and it is expected to continue to grow with new advances such as 3D printing.

Some of the latest trends include:

Teeth Whitening

The teeth whitening trend has gained popularity amongst modern individuals due to unhealthy habits that tend to cause discoloration of teeth. Globally, 82.5% of all dental patients have stated that they saw a noticeable improvement in the color of their teeth after a professional treatment and nearly all participants agreed that an attractive smile is a social asset and a confidence booster.

One of the major factors that have influenced the growth of this industry is the rising awareness of dental hygiene. The industry has seen a massive turnaround in the last decade; with global annual sales of whitening toothpastes adding up to $3.2 billion.  In the coming year, product sales are estimated to be a whopping $11 billion with an estimated growth projection of about $630 billion!

Veneers - The Perfect Smile

When looking into cosmetic dentistry, most are looking for something that will help improve their smile.  For those who have chipped or worn out dentures, veneers are the solution to a nicer looking smile.

Veneers are thin coverings that are placed over the front part of teeth to help camouflage any dental issue and reinvent the way you feel. As mentioned, this procedure helps patients with chipped or worn out teeth but also help those whose teeth cannot be whitened by bleach.

Scaling and Polishing

Accumulation of food and bacteria in the teeth is a natural process; the problem begins when one fails to clean their teeth regularly. To get rid of the harmful effects of plaque, individuals have to follow a dental procedure known as scaling. This procedure involves removing the calculus deposits or stains on the teeth. Regular scaling and polishing by a dentist helps keep teeth and gums healthy, preventing patients from experiencing periodontics, a severe gum disease, and improving bad breath in individuals.

According to a BIS Report analyses, in the next few years, the Dental Polishing market size will grow and reach around $390 million by the year 2024.

 

Clear Aligners

Wearing uncomfortable wires and bands to get a straight set of teeth is not the cool thing to do anymore! Clear aligners are made of transparent plastic making them invisible to others and can offer a greater convenience to the user. One can continue with their normal social and professional life without losing confidence in their physical appearance or compromising on their eating habits.

According to a survey, 70% people surveyed believe that just by improving one’s facial aesthetics and smile, one can boost their confidence and self-esteem. The study also highlighted that when adults feel more confident due to their improved smile and appearance, they are perceived as a happier, attractive, successful and smarter being.

Over 8 million people, including 1.4 million+ teenagers have successfully opted to use clear aligners to transform their smiles and their social lives.

Dental Implants

The global dental implant market size is expected to drive huge growth through 2024. The procedure for implantology includes specialized diagnosis and treatment for missing teeth, single or partial and a full replacement of the entire upper or lower mouth.

Dental implants can also help with preserving the natural bone structure in the mouth, restore normal function and improve appearance.

Digital Previews

Have you ever wondered how your smile would look after cosmetic dentistry? Digital previews use special software to show you realistic results of what your smile could look like with a specific cosmetic service. Helping you visualize the treatment outcome and confidently make a decision.

3D Printing

3D Systems, a leader and manufacturer of 3D printers launched an innovative and biocompatible 3D printing material called NextDent Denture 3D+, after receiving a 510(k) clearance from the U.S. FDA.

With 3D Systems’ Digital Denture Workflow, dental laboratories and clinics are now able to produce dental devices at dramatically increased speed while reducing material waste and capital equipment expenditure as well as reliance upon milling centers. The NextDent Denture 3D+ creates a trusted end-to-end workflow giving prosthodontists a competitive advantage while improving patient experience.

As Noble Dental Supplies, we’ve used our extensive knowledge in sourcing to bring dentists high-quality dental supplies across a wide range of categories that are 30-50% below the other name-brand dental supply products. Take a look at our range of dental supplies on our website.

 

Mouthwash May Reduce Spread of the New Coronavirus

Since January, health authorities have identified more than 6 million COVID-19 cases throughout the United States. In an effort to mitigate the virus’ spread, state and local authorities throughout the country have moved to limit large gatherings, closed non-essential businesses and ordered residents to stay in their homes, triggering a near-total national shutdown. Things have reopened in phases since then, but the numbers are still increasing.

Scientists have claimed that just 30 seconds of gargling with mouthwashes might help reduce the transmission of the coronavirus. Experts in Germany found that the dental product was effective in ‘inactivating’ SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

SARS-CoV-2 viruses can be inactivated using certain commercially available mouthwashes. This was demonstrated in cell culture experiments by virologists from Ruhr-Universität Bochum together with colleagues from Jena, Ulm, Duisburg-Essen, Nuremberg and Bremen.

High viral loads could be detected in the oral cavity and throats of some COVID-19 patients. The use of mouthwashes that are effective against SARS-CoV-2 could thus help reduce the viral load and possibly the risk of coronavirus transmission over a short term.

However, mouth rinses are not suitable for treating COVID-19 infections or protecting yourself against catching the virus.

The results of this study are described by the team headed by Toni Meister, Professor Stephanie Pfänder and Professor Eike Steinmann from the Bochum-based Molecular and Medical Virology research group in the Journal of Infectious Diseases, published online on 29 July 2020. A review of laboratory results in clinical trials is pending.

Eight mouthwashes in a cell culture test

The researchers tested eight mouthwashes with different ingredients that are available in pharmacies or drugstores in Germany. They mixed each mouthwash with virus particles and an interfering substance, which was intended to recreate the effect of saliva in the mouth.

The mixture was then shaken for 30 seconds to stimulate the effect of gargling. They then used VERO E6 cells, which are particularly receptive to SARS-CoV-2, to determine the virus load. In order to assess the efficiency of the mouthwashes, the researchers also treated the virus suspensions with cell culture medium instead of the mouthwash before adding them to the cell culture.

All of the tested preparations reduced the initial virus load. Three mouthwashes reduced it to such an extent that no virus could be detected after an exposure time of 30 seconds. Whether this effect is confirmed in clinical practice and how long it lasts must be investigated in further studies.

The study’s author’s point out that mouthwashes are not suitable for treating COVID-19. “Gargling with a mouthwash cannot inhibit the production of viruses in the cells,” explains Toni Meister, “but could reduce the viral load in the short term where the greatest potential for infection comes from namely in the oral cavity and throat, and this could be useful in certain situations, such as at the dentist or during the medical care of COVID-19 patients.”

Clinical studies in progress

The Bochum group is examining the possibilities of a clinical study on the efficacy of mouthwashes on SARS-CoV-2 viruses, during which the scientists want to test whether the effect can also be detected in patients and how long it lasts. Similar studies are already underway in San Francisco; the Bochum team is in contact with the American researchers.

They claim that swashing the liquid could reduce the virus load, which is the amount of particles being carried by an infected individual – in the throat and in turn limit transmission. This proves that mouthwashes could reduce the risk of coronavirus transmission.

Similar studies are already underway in San Francisco, as well as in the UK. Back in May, scientists at Cardiff University suggested that gargling mouthwash may help kill the new coronavirus. Meanwhile, experts from Edinburgh University claimed saltwater may be just as effective in fighting the virus. Both teams called for urgent research into the potential benefits of using the rinse to combat COVID-19.

To improve your oral health, you need to brush, floss, rinse and repeat. Preventative measures like brushing and flossing are a must, as it might be a while until your next dental appointment. Staying hydrated throughout the day will also help remove plaque and bacteria. The no.1 rule in improving oral hygiene is making sure we brush, and follow it up by using a mouthwash and dental floss, twice a day. Here are a few great oral rinse products you could definitely depend on.

-          Listerine Zero

The Listerine Zero Mouthwash is less intense with a zero-alcohol formula that cleans deep and kills millions of bad breath germs for a cleaner, fresher mouth!

-          Listerine Total Care

This fresh mint anti-cavity mouthwash works in 6 ways for a cleaner, healthier mouth.

-          Listerine Freshburst Antiseptic

Adding a 30-second rinse with this Listerine Antiseptic to your morning and night-time routines is all it will take to get 24-hours protection against plaque and gingivitis causing germs.

-          Listerine Cool Mint

In a clinical study, this mouth wash was shown to reduce 52% more plaque and 21% more gingivitis than brushing and flossing alone.

At Noble Dental Supplies, we bring dentists high-quality dental supplies across a wide range of categories that are 30-50% below the expensive name-brand dental supply products. We even offer free shipping for all orders above $500!

 

Guidelines To A Safe Reopening

Reopening the country requires everyone to move forward by practicing social distancing and daily habits that will help reduce the risk of exposure to the COVID-19 virus. Whether you own a business, run a school, or want to ensure the cleanliness of your home, a safe reopeningstrongly relies on public health strategies.

Now that businesses are reopening and some states are relaxing social distancing restrictions it is important that States make testing more accessible to citizens by increasing the amount of testing locations available to the public. This will help keep track of how the virus is spreading and attack the increasing numbers.

For citizens to ensure their safety when stepping out of the house, cleaning and disinfecting public spaces will require you to develop a plan, implement and maintain your plan accordingly.

 

This guide is intended for all Americans.

 

The EPA has compiled a list of disinfectant products that can be used against COVID-19 including ready-to-use sprays, concentrates, and wipes. Each product has been shown to be effective against viruses that are hard to kill, like the one that causes COVID-19.

This document provides a general framework for cleaning and disinfecting practices. The framework is based on doing the following:

  1.       Routine cleaning with soap and water will reduce the risk of exposure by decreasing how much of the virus is on surfaces and objects.
  2.       Using EPA-approved disinfectants against COVID-19 can also help reduce the risk. Frequently disinfect surfaces and objects touched by multiple people.
  3.       When EPA-approved disinfectants are not available, alternative disinfectants can be used. Do not mix bleach with other cleaning or disinfecting products, this can cause fumes that may be very dangerous to breathe. Bleach solutions will be effective for disinfection up to 24 hours.
  4.       You should never eat, drink, breathe or inject these products into your body or apply them directly to your skin as they can cause serious harm. Do not wipe or bathe pets with these products or any other products that are not approved for animal use.

 

Develop a Plan

In order to develop your plan, begin by evaluating your area by determining what kind of surfaces or materials make up that area. Most surfaces and objects will need normal routine cleaning. Frequently touched surfaces and objects like light switches and doorknobs will need to be disinfected to further reduce the risk of being infected with germs that may cause COVID-19.

  •          Firstly, you must clean the surface or object with soap and water
  •          Then, disinfect using an EPA-approved disinfectant.
  •          If an EPA-approved disinfectant is unavailable, you can use 1/3 cup of bleach added to 1 gallon of water, or 70% alcohol solutions to disinfect. Do not mix bleach or other cleaning or disinfection products together. Bleach solutions will be effective for disinfection up to 24 hours.

Soft and porous materials, such as area rugs and seating, may be removed or stored to reduce disinfecting challenges.

It is critical that your plan includes how to maintain a cleaning and disinfecting strategy after reopening or allowing guest in your home. Develop a flexible plan with your staff or family, adjusting the plan as federal or local guidance is updated.

If your workplace, school or business has been unoccupied for 7 days or more, it will only need your normal routine cleaning to reopen the area. This is because the virus has not been shown to survive on surfaces longer than this time.

Implement your Plan

Once you have a plan, it’s time to take action. Read all manufacturers’ instructions for the cleaning and disinfection products that you will use. Put on your gloves and other required personal protective equipment (PPE) to begin the process of cleaning and disinfecting.

-          Clean visibly dirty surfaces with soap and water prior to disinfection. Remember to always wear gloves to protect your skin from chemicals during routine cleanings.

-          Use the appropriate cleaning or disinfecting product. EPA-approved disinfectants when applied according to the manufacturer’s label are effective for use against COVID-19.

Maintain and Revise your Plan

Take steps to reduce your risk of exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19 during daily activities. Reducing exposure to yourself and others is a shared responsibility. Continue to update your plan based on updated guidance and your current circumstances.

Surfaces that are frequently touched by multiple people, such as door handles, desks, phones, light switches, and faucets should be cleaned and disinfected at least once a day. More frequent cleaning and disinfection may be required based on level of use.

Consider choosing a different disinfectant if your first choice is in short supply. Make sure that there is enough appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) and assessthe size of the surface you are treating.

It is essential that we change the ways we use public and private spaces to work, live and play. Now, sourcing personal protective equipmentand other infection control suppliesduring the COVID-19 pandemicis extremely simple thanks to Noble Dental Supplies who now offer free shipping for orders over $500.

Remember, we’re all in this together!

 

5 WAYS TO STAY AHEAD OF THE DENTAL INDUSTRY

 VLOG 2

Are Eye Shields Better than Face Masks When Protecting YourselfAgainst Coronavirus?

While cloth facemasksare now universal, clear plastic face shields are starting to become a public favorite and the new found curiosity has raised questions about how well they protect against COVID-19.

 

The corona virus is spread mainly through respiratory droplets produced when an infected individual coughs, sneezes or speaks. Transmission primarily occurs during close person-to-person contact and, less commonly, via contaminated surfaces.

 

Eli Perencevich, a professor of internal medicine and epidemiology at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine – believes that face shields could potentially be more effective than cloth face masks in a community setting.

 

In an opinion piece Perencevich cited a 2014 study from the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) that looked at how well face shields protected a health care worker against influenza. They found that the face shield reduced immediate viral exposure to the flu by 92%, when worn within 6 feet of a cough.

 

 

However, according to the CDC, facemasks are still the best deterrent of the virus and recommend facial coverings because there are currently no studies that examine how well face shields protect other individuals from the wearer’s own respiratory droplets, should they be infected.

 

Co-director of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Infectious Diseases, HolgerSchunemann says, “Eye protection may provide additional benefits,”

 

After analyzing 44 studies across 26 countries and six continents from March - May 2020, the research team, suggested everyone wear eye protection; which could reduce the risk of infection from 16% to 6%, compared to those without eye protection.

 

Although physical distancing plays the greatest role in reducing the spread of COVID-19, face masks and eye protection were each highly effective.

 

Order face shields in bulk at low costs only from Noble Dental Supplies. We’ve used our extensive knowledge in order to bring dentists high-quality dental supplies across a wide range of categories that are 30-50% below the expensive name-brand products. Browse through our range of dental supplies and get free shipping for orders over $500!


HOW TO AQUIRE NEW PATIENTS AS A DENTIST

 VLOG 1

A New Way of Preventing the COVID-19 Virus

For dental professionals who operate in the oral and nasal cavities the COVID-19 pandemic has posed a severe threat. Since the mouth is a portal for taking in the coronavirus, oral care should be amongst the topmost priorities.

Dr. AvinashBidra, a clinical associate professor of prosthodontics at the School of Dental Medicine and Dr. BelachewTessema, ENT physician at ProHealth Physicians, investigated a way to decontaminate the patient’s oral and nasal cavities to protect and prevent transmission.

Their studies have proven that a simple method of rinsing with a diluted version of over-the-counter PVP-I solutions can kill viruses and can prevent transmission in as little as 15 seconds.

            “We were not satisfied with the safety provided by masks and face shields. Almost all procedures involve aerosol production, resulting in a higher risk for clinicians, assistants, and patients” says Dr. Bidra.

PVP-I solutions are typically sold over the counter at 10% concentration to be used as an antiseptic for wounds.

 The test ran three different diluted concentrations of 1.5%, 1% and 0.5% at three different contact times of 15 seconds, 30 seconds and 45 seconds. Research showed that the lowest concentration of 0.5% and the lowest contact period of 15 seconds was enough to completely inactivate SARS CoV-2 in the laboratory.

Bidra and Tessema recommend using 9.5 ml of water and 0.5ml of a commercially available 10% povidone-iodine antiseptic solution to create a 0.5% diluted solution. The dilution should be done before rinsing and should be for a minimum of 30 seconds.

Precaution should be taken if allergic to iodine, if they are pregnant or if theysuffer from the thyroid.

“This is a simple and inexpensive method to protect oneself when coming in close contact with people. We believe this has immediate and tremendous dental public health impact for patients and for dental professionals, amidst the ongoing pandemic” says Dr. Bidra.

“The safety of povidone-iodine in the sinonasal and oral cavity has been well documented and we have shown that the SARS CoV-2 virus can be rapidly inactivated by a topical application. Studies have shown that the nasal and oropharyngeal cells are reservoirs for SARS-CoV2 infection. We believe that nasal and oral decontamination with PVP-I may play a role in mitigating viral transmission beyond PPE.” says Tessema.

The researchers are optimistic that this method can benefit those engaged in high-risk activities outside of a dental or otolaryngology setting. Anyone engaging in risky activities like barbers and hair dressersmay benefit from this method.

Oral conditions may impact infection in other parts of the body, especially in people with a compromised immune system.

Here are a few things you could do to improve your oral health.

  1.      Brush, floss, rinse, repeat
    Preventative measures like brushing and flossing are a must, as it might be a while until your next dental appointment. Staying hydrated throughout the day will also help remove plaque and bacteria.

 

  1.      Clean and replace your toothbrush regularly
    The bristles of your toothbrush can be a breeding ground for bacteria. Fungi, like candida, can live on a toothbrush. A good way to keep your toothbrush clean is to rinse it with hydrogen peroxide once a week to keep the bristles clean.

 

  1.      Do not share oral hygiene products
    If you’re sharing oral hygiene products with anyone in your family, stop immediately. Periodontal disease, a common septic condition caused by poor hygiene and candidiasis, can be spread easily via toothbrush. So can viruses such as streptococcus mutans, which can cause MRSA infections as well as Herpes simplex and HPV, a virus linked to esophageal, oral and cervical cancers.

Click here to browse the Noble Dental Supplies inventory and ready yourself against the Covid-19 virus. Browse from a wide range of supplies priced below the average rate and enjoy free shipping when your order is $500 or more.


IF YOU’RE LOOKING FOR DENTAL SUPPLIERS,

HERE ARE SOME TIPS

 VLOG 3

Mouthwash that Can Help Control COVID-19 Virus?

In a report by the US Bureau of Labour Statistics, it is mentioned that dentistry presents the greatest risk of exposure to medical practitioners, as they are brought in much closer contact with patients and patients’ saliva due to the contaminated aerosol that some dental procedures generate.

Direct contact with respiratory aerosols or droplets from infected individuals when sneezing, coughing, or talking are the main route of transmission for SARS-CoV-2. Therefore, high volumes of the virus in the oral cavity offer a strong source of potential infection for dentist.

Many recommendations and behavioural guidelines have been published by professional dental chambers and dental associations stating that over the counter mouthwashes may inactivate SARS-CoV-2. Potentially cutting the risk of transmission, according to a study published in the Journal of Infectious Diseases.

One recommendation in particular would appear to be of significant interest to the dental practitioner - the use of a mouth rinse as a possible safeguard to prevent cross infections, reduce aerosol contamination and deactivate the virus in the oral cavity.

Mouthwashes that contain the active ingredients of either dequalinium chloride, benzalkonium chloride, poluvidone-iodine, or ethanol significantly reduced the viral infectivity of SARS-CoV-2.

The high risk of transmission of the virus and the exponential increase in positive cases, in addition to the known possibility of being an asymptomatic or paucisymptomatic carrier (few symptoms are so mild they never suspect an infection), obliges dental practice staff to consider all patients as potentially infected.

Chlorhexidine has a well-documented effect against viruses in general and specifically against enveloped viruses such as HIV18. Moreover, because Chlorhexidine has excellent virucidal action itcan prevent COVID-19 even at lower concentrations.

Considering the available data, all the antiseptics proposed have an antiviral effect and it is therefore impossible to say that any one of them is not active against viruses. In the specific case of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, there is no definite evidence.

The only deductions made must be based on the action mechanism, on the data relating to similar viruses in the past, on results obtained in other non-dental fields, and on the products’ disinfection action on inanimate surfaces.

There is no definite proof that hydrogen peroxide 1% and povidone-iodine 1% are effective when used as mouth rinses against the SARS-CoV-2 virus, but their 

underlyingoxidation mechanism can eradicate numerous viruses from contaminated surfaces and areas.

Chlorhexidine has been proven effective against microorganisms in the aerosol produced by dental procedures – and has the highest efficacy as a chemical plaque control agent.

Find products like chlorhexidine gluconate oral rinse at Noble Dental Supplies. Browse through a wide variety of merchandise or call at 1-866-333-6825 for assistance on your order.

HOW TO REDUCE OVERHEAD ISSUES

AND ENSURE BOTTOMLINE GROWTH

 VLOG 4

How to start a dental practice

How To Start A Dental Practice: A Dental Checklist

Starting out a new dental practice is a huge endeavor. From planning the initial concept of your business to stocking supplies, there may be a lot to do and consider before you even open the doors to see patients. In order to help you organize your efforts and be better prepared, you must understand the scope of what needs to happen in each aspect of your new business. 

While many of the action items below appear simple, they do require hours of research, financial budget, professional assistance, committee approval, applications, and more. So once we go through the checklist, we shall discuss a few points from it in detail below. 

Remember, it may not be possible for you to undertake all these tasks yourself and you might need to hire professional services in order to assist you. You will also need a trustworthy dental supplier and that is where we come in. Noble Dental Supplies has been serving the global dental community since 1978. We offer discounted dental products and you can easily browse through our range of supplies by clicking on this link - https://www.nobledentalsupplies.com/. 

Here’s a dental checklist to quickly guide you on how to start a dental practice one task at a time. 

Starting a New Dental Practice Checklist

  • Initial concerns
  • Decide if you want to start a brand new practice or buy into an existing one
  • Sketch out a business plan
  • Arrange financing
  • Buy or lease office space
  • Plan out your specialties and services
  • Decide practice hours and holidays

  • Human Resources
  • Hire a lawyer & an accountant
  • Put out advertisements to hire
  • Check applications and references
  • Complete license verification, interview candidates and hire
  • Fill out employment eligibility I-9 forms and check policies & benefits
  • Take support from human resource solutions to make sure everything is in order
  • Begin training and orientation

  • Insurance policies
  • Get Life insurance
  • Professional liability malpractice insurance
  • Disability income insurance
  • Workman’s compensation
  • ERISA bonds
  • Business loan protection insurance
  • Business overhead expense insurance
  • Entity malpractice insurance
  • Business owner’s protection insurance
  • Employment practices liability insurance
  • Data breach insurance

  • Obtaining Finances
  • Establish credit accepted and pricing
  • Become a provider listed with major insurance providers
  • Obtain required equipment, hardware and software for accepting payments
  • Consider payment plans you will offer
  • Make arrangements to accept cash (banking, safe, change and so on)
  • Secure accounting assistance as needed
  • Setup state and federal taxes and acquire IRS tax ID number

  • Clinical Requirements
  • Stock up on supplies 
  • Ordering affordable dental supplies was never this convenient - https://www.nobledentalsupplies.com/ 
  • Buy equipment and schedule installation
  • Choose and partner with a dental laboratory
  • Hire medical waste management service
  • Consider the amenities you’d like to offer your patients and in the waiting area
  • Determine software needs for finances, call tracking, appointment schedules, billings and coding. 
  • Marketing
  • Launch your practice website
  • Make online listings of your practice info wherever applicable
  • Set up a review page for your service on the website
  • Create social media pages
  • Create a practice email account
  • Get a logo designed and get it on some merchandise to imprint brand image
  • Regulations & Licensing
  • Get local zoning and building occupancy permits
  • Get a state dental license and a controlled substance license
  • You’ll need HIPAA compliance
  • You’ll need to register as a provider with the centers for Medicare & Medicaid services
  • You will also need infection control standards compliance and OSHA compliance

Buying a dental practice can seem overwhelming at first, but the rewards of being your own boss and running your own office can make it all worth it. But first, let’s briefly discuss a few points from the above checklist in detail. 

 

  • Understanding your budget

    Estimate as best as you can for the initial costs to get your office up and running AND to sustain day-to-day operating expenses for at least the first few months. Most importantly, predict in advance any unexpected costs to ensure there is money available, just in case. This fact is overlooked very often by new dental practices and before they know it, they start relying on credit cards and scramble to find further capital.

  • Good Location 

    It’s a good idea to research the area you want to locate your practice in before you settle on a place. This will help you gain understanding of the local market. Ideally, your location should be accessible, in proximity to your targeted patients, and most importantly, it should be within your budget. You also want to avoid an area where there are a lot of practitioners already.

  • Equipment and Supplies


    Buying dental equipment for the practice can be a lengthy and costly process. First of all, in order to run a business smoothly, you need to make sure that you’re buying your dental supplies in bulk and from a trustworthy name. Noble Dental Supplies has been in the business since the past 42 years. We offer facilities for quick ordering and re-ordering of your dental supplies and equipment as well as heavy discounts on bulk ordering.
  • Hiring Staff

     It’s important to start thinking about hiring before you’re ready to move into a new office. Make sure you make time into your schedule to properly vet and hire suitable candidates. There are other considerations besides salary that you’ll need to budget for which include insurance, time off and other benefits.
  • Legal Requirements 

    It can take months to earn credentials for your practice to accept a private and government insurance. So don’t wait until the last minute to handle the legal aspects. You also need to make sure you’re properly licensed in your state, have a national provider identifier number and are registered with the DEA. You must also comply with all other local regulations specific to your area. It’s a good idea to retain a healthcare attorney to assist so you can be sure you’re not missing anything. 

  • Marketing

    You must implement a marketing plan that advertises your practice across local print, TV and radio stations, as well as on online portals. A website with clear directions for setting up an appointment is a good place to start.

Want to be prepared for 2nd wave of pandemic

Five Best Items to Have During a Pandemic/ How Should You Prepare For a Pandemic /5 Items to Stock up During the Pandemic

The World Health Organization has declared Covid-19 a pandemic. As the total number of cases in the United States exceed 1 million earlier this week, the WHO has set guidelines for the public to prepare themselves for the effect of the pandemic.

Covid-19, the novel coronavirus that first caused an outbreak in China in 2019 has rapidly infected people around the globe. According to the CDC, the most vulnerable to this viral threat are people over the age of 60 and those with chronic diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes and lung disease. Everyone around the world has been urged to stay at home as much as possible and practice social distancing. The virus can cause symptoms ranging from cough to high fever, shortness of breath, and in some cases, it can be deadly, particularly in those populations most at risk.

The first thing you need to do and this is most important. You must not panic. Even though the term pandemic can sound scary, it doesn’t mean the world is ending. Depending on the scale of the pandemic, there can be interruptions to supply chains and economic repercussions. We’ve already seen multiple reports of people stocking up on essentials all at the same time, which has left supermarkets out of stock.

  If you’re unable to easily purchase supplies  at short notice, it is worth being prepared so that you can be comfortable staying home if you or someone in your family does get sick and needs to remain in isolation. As the Coronavirus continues its rapid spread internationally and across the U.S. many Americans are following public health advice from the Centers from Disease Control and Prevention to prepare for the possibility of a lengthy home stay.  

  So it’s important to have what you need in order to remain at home for a longer period, possibly weeks. That way experts say you’ll be prepared if you need to decrease contact and socialization in case you get sick, or try to prevent illness if there’s an outbreak of coronavirus in your communiy, but rather than panicking and buying more than you need, it’s about being adequately stocked. Just in case you need to shelter in place, or in case stores have limited supplies for some time. 

Read on to know more about the best five items to stock up and how you need to prepare yourself for the pandemic, according to experts

  • Medications

    It’s a better idea to have a month’s supply of any medications you might be taking, than running out of stock and not finding any at the last moment. Keep handy any self-care supplies, including items needed to manage chronic disease like blood glucose test trips for diabetes, etc.

     “Check to ensure you have at least a 30-day supply of your prescription medications, and have other health supplies on hand, including pain relievers, stomach remedies, cough and cold medicines, fluids with electrolytes, and vitamins,” advises Anthony Tornetta, a spokesperson for the American Red Cross. Also keep a thermometer and medications to reduce fever handy.


  • Stock Food

    Make sure you get foods you like and are comfortable preparing. While the focus should be to stock up on things that won’t go bad in storage, such as soup and canned food; avoid purchasing things that you won’t end up consuming.

     “Non-perishable, easy-to-prepare items are the best to have on hand. These could be things already in your pantry, such as canned goods or snack bars that can last and be easily stored. If you have an infant, make sure to stock up on extra baby food and formula,” Tornetta adds. “Similarly, if you have pets, make sure you have extra pet food in your home as well.” Make sure you have at least two-week’s worth of these supplies for every person in your household. Just make sure to regularly replace any perishable foods and don’t neglect non-perishable stocks. Eating well supports overall health and can bolster immunity at a time when that’s critical. 

  • Stock Up on Cleaning Supplies 

    Regular hand-washing is important to prevent the spread of disease including coronavirus. At home, soap and, water are more than sufficient. If for some reason, you eventually need to leave your quarantine, it’s a good idea to have antibacterial wipes and/or hand sanitizer gel. Make sure your hand sanitizer is at least 60% alcohol. Get your hands on alcohol-based sanitizer in the comfort of your home, by clicking here - https://www.nobledentalsupplies.com/hand-sanitizer-gel-70-alcohol-w-aloe-mark3.

     Noble Dental Supplies offers high-quality yet cost-effective enzymatic & ultrasonic cleaners, surface barriers and sterilization pouches. Stock up on your cleaning supplies by placing your order here - https://www.nobledentalsupplies.com/infection-control-products.

     Make sure you have all you need to keep your home sanitized. You should have disinfectant sanitizers & tissues, such as Kleenex and paper towels, Gentry suggests. You should also have wipes and diapers and any other supplies you need if you have a baby, he advises. 

  • Wearing a Mask 

    We now know from recent studies that a significant portion of individuals with coronavirus lack symptoms (‘asymptomatic’) and that even those who eventually develop symptoms (pre-symptomatic’) can transmit the virus to others before showing symptoms. This means that the virus can spread between people interacting in close proximity – for example speaking, coughing, or sneezing – even if those people are not exhibiting symptoms. In light of this new evidence, CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.

  • Plan Ahead

    You must plan ahead when it comes to emergency, so as you stock up on goods, make sure you put a plan in place to monitor the spread of the virus in your community and neighborhood. This plan will guide you in case you get sick. Keep yourself up to date with local and international news as well as national updates from the CDC. 

You must plan ahead when it comes to emergency, so as you stock up on goods, make sure you put a plan in place to monitor the spread of the virus in your community and neighborhood. This plan will guide you in case you get sick. Keep yourself up to date with local and international news as well as national updates from the CDC.

Want to be prepared for pandemic

How To Do Your Part In Preventing A Second Wave Of Coronavirus


The Director of the CDC, Robert Redfield in an interview with the Washington Post last week, said that the second wave of Coronavirus, a disease caused by the novel coronavirus, could be worse than the current one that shook the world. “There’s a possibility that the assault of the virus on our nation next winter will be more difficult than the one we just went through,” he said, because it would coincide with the annual flu epidemic, which killed 24,000 to 62,000 people last year alone and caused 18-26 million hospital visits.

Even though several hours later, during Trump’s daily coronavirus press briefing, Redfield was forced to take back his statement saying it is still going to be “more difficult and potentially more complicated, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be worse”. 

As of today roughly 80,000 Americans have died from the coronavirus with a vast majority of them happening in the New York, New Jersey area. For a comparison, more than the 47,434 Americans were killed in combat during the Vietnam War. The total number of cases in the United States exceeded 1 million earlier this week. The 1st four months of this crisis will assuredly mean that when we get out of this, we will all be different people in a very different world. 

The coronavirus pandemic may have slowed down in many parts of the country because of strict social distancing efforts but we would still hold off on planning any parties, vacations or trips to the office for a while at least. Experts say the virus won’t be a thing of the past anytime soon. 

A second round of Covid-19 cases is ‘inevitable’ as soon as fall arrives, says the country’s top infectious disease doctor, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. As people increasingly try to resume regular life and more states ease or lift their stay-at-home orders, he says that he is ‘almost certain’ that the virus will come back, because it is so transmissible and globally spread. According to him Americans could be in for ‘a bad fall and a bad winter’, if the country is ill-prepared.

There are many aspects of the virus that remain unknown for scientists, but older viruses are offering some clues. People are usually infected by 4 common coronaviruses that were 1st identified in the mid-1960s, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and those tend to increase multifold in winter months.

Dr. Greg Poland, a professor of medicine and infectious diseases at the Mayo Clinic says that Covid-19 is likely to follow that pattern. If that happens, a second wave of the virus would return just in time for the start of flu season. The flu has been a constant threat to Americans and has been devastating in recent years. The CDC estimates that there were at least 39 million cases of the flu in the US and at least 24,000 deaths during the 2019-2020 seasons. He says that the combination of a second wave of Covid-19 with flu season could create ‘a lot of confusion’ because of their overlap in symptoms and it could also put a heavy strain on the health care system.

It appears that the novel coronavirus is likely to keep spreading for at least another 18 months. There are several possible scenarios for the course of the pandemic, but the worst of them is s second wave of infections just like the 1918 influenza pandemic, according to a report by the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota. 

Mike Osterholm, CIDRAP Director, co-authored a report released recently that recommended the US prepare for a worst-case scenario. The report includes preparation guidelines for a second big wave of coronavirus infections in the fall and winter. 

How to Prevent Second Wave of Coronavirus

According to health experts, the coming months would be a good time to prepare for a potential second outbreak of the virus.

  • Hospitals and clinics should refurbish their stocks of PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) and testing supplies. Order your PPE with zero hassles by clicking here -
    https://www.nobledentalsupplies.com/kleenguard-a70-chemical-spray-protective-yellow-coveralls-12cs-kimberly-clark
  • People should try to get healthier if possible and continue using face masks for the time being. Gatherings should be kept to no more than 10 people at a time.
  • As cities reopen, local officials should make plans to swiftly reissue stay-at-home orders or other strict social distancing measures in the future, in case it is needed.
  • Health officials across the country must continue focusing on expanding coronavirus testing, contact tracing and treatment, said Dr. Helen Boucher, Chief of the Geographic Medicine and Infectious Diseases Division at Tufts University Medical Center. Improving the way health workers handle the coronavirus pandemic will be key, so the country is ‘as prepared as we can be’ when it’s time to face an outbreak of both the coronavirus and the flu.  Check out all our discounted medical supplies at https://www.nobledentalsupplies.com/. 

    While most experts believe that people who have recovered from the virus will have some sort of immunity, Poland says it is unclear how strong that immunity might be, how long it might last and the accuracy of antibody tests is inconsistent. A lot of hope is being placed on the fact that there are no definitive answers yet, because there’s still a lot scientists don’t know. 

    Even though the worst is over, the months to come are not going to be ‘good’ but merely ‘less bad’. All in all, we’re probably living with this virus affecting our lives for one to two years, unless there is a breakthrough and really speedy production and distribution of a vaccine. 

     

 

Re Opening your practice

Getting Back To Normal And How Dentists Can Start Stocking Up Again/

Tips on Reopening Your Dental Practice Post Coronavirus 

As the nation begins to slowly reopen different sectors of the economy, it is important to consider how this “return to practice” will work for the dental industry.

Natasha Lee, DDS, a practicing dentist in San Francisco, was appointed for this effort by the Gov. Gavin Newsom to California’s Economic Recovery Task Force. Dr. Lee is also a member of CDA’s Covid-19 Clinical Care Workgroup and Economic Recovery Workgroup. 


The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and the California Department of Public Health in March and Early April, issued guidance that dentists should perform only urgent and emergency care. This guidance was driven by data that demonstrated an alarming rise in community transmission across the country and the need to flatten the Covid-19 curve of infection and death. It was also done in order to protect dental personnel and their patients from the virus. CDA, ADA and most state dental organizations issued recommendations consistent with the federal and respective state authorities regarding how to apply the guidance in serving patients during the crisis.

In addition to enormous advocacy for economic relief, the next critical phase of work is to address recommendations regarding when the profession may resume thorough patient care and what practice changes will be needed to provide that kind of care. 

CDA President Richard Nagy, DDS, and California State Dental Director Jay Kumar, DDS, have established a workgroup composed of dental practitioners, academicians and researchers to help establish the recommendations for this futuristic path.

The workgroup’s return-to-practice guidance will be informed by dental office infection control fundamentals and Covid-19 specific research and advisories. Also, the workgroup is monitoring federal and state advisories and conditions for reopening the economy.

While there are many details that still need evaluation, what is certain is that significant steps must be taken to restart the broader economy and dentistry. Providing frequent close-contact, high-aerosol procedures that are common in dentistry will require meeting several conditions. The two most vital components to this would be the wide availability of rapid testing and sufficient availability of PPE, which is in short supply, as we are all well aware.

Browse through our range of discount dental supplies such as gloves, gowns, goggles, face masks, sanitizers, and disinfectants by clicking on this link -

https://www.nobledentalsupplies.com/infection-control-products

 In order to get back to normal, here’s an infection control checklist for reopening the practice after Coronavirus closures. 

  • Safe practices. 

    When practices do begin seeing patients on a routine basis, safe practices infection prevention consultant and speaker Jackie Dorst, RDH, BS, doesn’t expect everything will look just the way it did before it was put on pause. “There won’t be one big opening of the gates and saying that everything’s all clear. It’s going to be a gradual thing. Densely populated areas may be a little slower to resume medical and dental services than rural areas that are sparsely populated.” Dorst also believes that waiting rooms will need to be reorganized to limit exposure to both patients and staff.

    The patient ideally should be met at the door, greeted, temperature taken, given a mask, a wellness screening, made to practice hand hygiene before they’re even seated in the operatory. It’s definitely going to require schedule planning and time on the dental team’s part.

  • PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)

    Personal protective equipment has always been an important component of infection control efforts at the dental practice. But, in a Covid-19 world, that equipment becomes even more important- along with its proper use and availability. One likely change is the type of PPE worn by staff, Dorst says, and the guidelines surrounding PPE that will become even more stringent.

    From now on, a dental assistant is going to have to wear an N95 respirator mask, with a full-face shield over it, and then an isolation gown, rather than just the clinic jacket or scrubs that they might have worn earlier.

    At Noble Dental Supplies, we offer high quality yet cost effective infection control products like gloves, gowns, goggles, face masks, sanitizers and disinfectants. To have a look at our range of wholesale dental equipment, click on this link - https://www.nobledentalsupplies.com/infection-control-products.

  • Equipment maintenance 
    This downtime has given practices the opportunity to address proper preparation and availability of dental instruments and equipment. Taking stock and getting the input of hygienists and assistants will make sure the office is ready for a full schedule post Coronavirus. Your team will appreciate being heard and the practice will be in great shape when things are in full swing again. Make sure ordering dental supplies in bulk is on the top of your list.

    Putting equipment back into use shouldn’t be difficult, but keep in mind it has been sitting unused and unmaintained for weeks. Be sure to properly service the equipment according to manufacturer instructions.

  • Refreshing skills
    Now is a great time to brush up on infection control policies and procedures, before patients walk through the door. It’s the perfect time to train on OSHA and Infection Control as well as take on written programs like the Exposure Control Plan. If you already have a process in place for screening for tuberculosis and other aerosol transmissible diseases, then it can be modified to include conditions like Covid-19. 

    It’s also very important to ensure that the practice has people in their proper safety roles, such as an infection control coordinator or a safety officer. But remember, safety is not just one person’s job, it is everyone’s job. However, a person in charge who oversees the program is extremely beneficial.

    Buy cheap dental equipment in bulk at Noble Dental Supplies. Our extensive knowledge in sourcing helps bring dentists high-quality dental supplies across a wide range of categories that are 30-50% below the expensive name-brand dental supply products. Click here to visit our website -
    https://www.nobledentalsupplies.com/.

Five Best Items to Have During a Pandemic/ How Should You Prepare For a Pandemic /5 Items to Stock up During the Pandemic

The World Health Organization has declared Covid-19 a pandemic. As the total number of cases in the United States exceed 1 million earlier this week, the WHO has set guidelines for the public to prepare themselves for the effect of the pandemic.

  Covid-19, the novel coronavirus that first caused an outbreak in China in 2019  has rapidly infected people around the globe. According to the CDC, the most vulnerable to this viral threat are people over the age of 60 and those with chronic diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes and lung disease. Everyone around the world has been urged to stay at home as much as possible and practice social distancing. The virus can cause symptoms ranging from cough to high fever, shortness of breath, and in some cases, it can be deadly, particularly in those populations most at risk. 

The first thing you need to do and this is most important. You must not panic. Even though the term pandemic can sound scary, it doesn’t mean the world is ending. Depending on the scale of the pandemic, there can be interruptions to supply chains and economic repercussions. We’ve already seen multiple reports of people stocking up on essentials all at the same time, which has left supermarkets out of stock.

If you’re unable to easily purchase supplies  at short notice, it is worth being prepared so that you can be comfortable staying home if you or someone in your family does get sick and needs to remain in isolation. As the Coronavirus continues its rapid spread internationally and across the U.S. many Americans are following public health advice from the Centers from Disease Control and Prevention to prepare for the possibility of a lengthy home stay.  

So it’s important to have what you need in order to remain at home for a longer period, possibly weeks. That way experts say you’ll be prepared if you need to decrease contact and socialization in case you get sick, or try to prevent illness if there’s an outbreak of coronavirus in your communiy, but rather than panicking and buying more than you need, it’s about being adequately stocked. Just in case you need to shelter in place, or in case stores have limited supplies for some time.

Read on to know more about the best five items to stock up and how you need to prepare yourself for the pandemic, according to experts.

  • Medications

It’s a better idea to have a month’s supply of any medications you might be taking, than running out of stock and not finding any at the last moment. Keep handy any self-care supplies, including items needed to manage chronic disease like blood glucose test trips for diabetes, etc.

 “Check to ensure you have at least a 30-day supply of your prescription medications, and have other health supplies on hand, including pain relievers, stomach remedies, cough and cold medicines, fluids with electrolytes, and vitamins,” advises Anthony Tornetta, a spokesperson for the American Red Cross. Also keep a thermometer and medications to reduce fever handy.

  • Stock Food

Make sure you get foods you like and are comfortable preparing. While the focus should be to stock up on things that won’t go bad in storage, such as soup and canned food; avoid purchasing things that you won’t end up consuming.

 “Non-perishable, easy-to-prepare items are the best to have on hand. These could be things already in your pantry, such as canned goods or snack bars that can last and be easily stored. If you have an infant, make sure to stock up on extra baby food and formula,” Tornetta adds. “Similarly, if you have pets, make sure you have extra pet food in your home as well.” Make sure you have at least two-week’s worth of these supplies for every person in your household. Just make sure to regularly replace any perishable foods and don’t neglect non-perishable stocks. Eating well supports overall health and can bolster immunity at a time when that’s critical. 

  • Stock Up on Cleaning Supplies


Regular hand-washing is important to prevent the spread of disease including coronavirus. At home, soap and, water are more than sufficient. If for some reason, you eventually need to leave your quarantine, it’s a good idea to have antibacterial wipes and/or hand sanitizer gel. Make sure your hand sanitizer is at least 60% alcohol. Get your hands on alcohol-based sanitizer in the comfort of your home, by clicking here - https://www.nobledentalsupplies.com/hand-sanitizer-gel-70-alcohol-w-aloe-mark3

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Make sure you have all you need to keep your home sanitized. You should have disinfectant sanitizers & tissues, such as Kleenex and paper towels, Gentry suggests. You should also have wipes and diapers and any other supplies you need if you have a baby, he advises.

  • Wearing a Mask

We now know from recent studies that a significant portion of individuals with coronavirus lack symptoms (‘asymptomatic’) and that even those who eventually develop symptoms (pre-symptomatic’) can transmit the virus to others before showing symptoms. This means that the virus can spread between people interacting in close proximity – for example speaking, coughing, or sneezing – even if those people are not exhibiting symptoms. In light of this new evidence, CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.

  • Plan Ahead

You must plan ahead when it comes to emergency, so as you stock up on goods, make sure you put a plan in place to monitor the spread of the virus in your community and neighborhood. This plan will guide you in case you get sick. Keep yourself up to date with local and international news as well as national updates from the CDC.

How To Do Your Part In Preventing A Second Wave Of Coronavirus


The Director of the CDC, Robert Redfield in an interview with the Washington Post last week, said that the second wave of Coronavirus, a disease caused by the novel coronavirus, could be worse than the current one that shook the world. “There’s a possibility that the assault of the virus on our nation next winter will be more difficult than the one we just went through,” he said, because it would coincide with the annual flu epidemic, which killed 24,000 to 62,000 people last year alone and caused 18-26 million hospital visits.


Even though several hours later, during Trump’s daily coronavirus press briefing, Redfield was forced to take back his statement saying it is still going to be “more difficult and potentially more complicated, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be worse”.

As of today roughly 80,000 Americans have died from the coronavirus with a vast majority of them happening in the New York, New Jersey area. For a comparison, more than the 47,434 Americans were killed in combat during the Vietnam War. The total number of cases in the United States exceeded 1 million earlier this week. The 1st four months of this crisis will assuredly mean that when we get out of this, we will all be different people in a very different world.

The coronavirus pandemic may have slowed down in many parts of the country because of strict social distancing efforts but we would still hold off on planning any parties, vacations or trips to the office for a while at least. Experts say the virus won’t be a thing of the past anytime soon.

A second round of Covid-19 cases is ‘inevitable’ as soon as fall arrives, says the country’s top infectious disease doctor, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. As people increasingly try to resume regular life and more states ease or lift their stay-at-home orders, he says that he is ‘almost certain’ that the virus will come back, because it is so transmissible and globally spread. According to him Americans could be in for ‘a bad fall and a bad winter’, if the country is ill-prepared.

There are many aspects of the virus that remain unknown for scientists, but older viruses are offering some clues. People are usually infected by 4 common coronaviruses that were 1st identified in the mid-1960s, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and those tend to increase multifold in winter months.

Dr. Greg Poland, a professor of medicine and infectious diseases at the Mayo Clinic says that Covid-19 is likely to follow that pattern. If that happens, a second wave of the virus would return just in time for the start of flu season. The flu has been a constant threat to Americans and has been devastating in recent years. The CDC estimates that there were at least 39 million cases of the flu in the US and at least 24,000 deaths during the 2019-2020 seasons. He says that the combination of a second wave of Covid-19 with flu season could create ‘a lot of confusion’ because of their overlap in symptoms and it could also put a heavy strain on the health care system.

It appears that the novel coronavirus is likely to keep spreading for at least another 18 months. There are several possible scenarios for the course of the pandemic, but the worst of them is s second wave of infections just like the 1918 influenza pandemic, according to a report by the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota.

Mike Osterholm, CIDRAP Director, co-authored a report released recently that recommended the US prepare for a worst-case scenario. The report includes preparation guidelines for a second big wave of coronavirus infections in the fall and winter.

How to Prevent Second Wave of Coronavirus

According to health experts, the coming months would be a good time to prepare for a potential second outbreak of the virus. 

  • Hospitals and clinics should refurbish their stocks of PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) and testing supplies. Order your PPE with zero hassles by clicking here - https://www.nobledentalsupplies.com/kleenguard-a70-chemical-spray-protective-yellow-coveralls-12cs-kimberly-clark 
  • People should try to get healthier if possible and continue using face masks for the time being. Gatherings should be kept to no more than 10 people at a time.
  • As cities reopen, local officials should make plans to swiftly reissue stay-at-home orders or other strict social distancing measures in the future, in case it is needed. 
  • Health officials across the country must continue focusing on expanding coronavirus testing, contact tracing and treatment, said Dr. Helen Boucher, Chief of the Geographic Medicine and Infectious Diseases Division at Tufts University Medical Center. Improving the way health workers handle the coronavirus pandemic will be key, so the country is ‘as prepared as we can be’ when it’s time to face an outbreak of both the coronavirus and the flu. Check out all our discounted medical supplies at https://www.nobledentalsupplies.com/.

While most experts believe that people who have recovered from the virus will have some sort of immunity, Poland says it is unclear how strong that immunity might be, how long it might last and the accuracy of antibody tests is inconsistent. A lot of hope is being placed on the fact that there are no definitive answers yet, because there’s still a lot scientists don’t know. 

Even though the worst is over, the months to come are not going to be ‘good’ but merely ‘less bad’. All in all, we’re probably living with this virus affecting our lives for one to two years, unless there is a breakthrough and really speedy production and distribution of a vaccine. 

Getting Back To Normal And How Dentists Can Start Stocking Up Again/ Tips on Reopening Your Dental Practice Post Coronavirus

As the nation begins to slowly reopen different sectors of the economy, it is important to consider how this “return to practice” will work for the dental industry.

Natasha Lee, DDS, a practicing dentist in San Francisco, was appointed for this effort by the Gov. Gavin Newsom to California’s Economic Recovery Task Force. Dr. Lee is also a member of CDA’s Covid-19 Clinical Care Workgroup and Economic Recovery Workgroup.

 The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and the California Department of Public Health in March and Early April, issued guidance that dentists should perform only urgent and emergency care. This guidance was driven by data that demonstrated an alarming rise in community transmission across the country and the need to flatten the Covid-19 curve of infection and death. It was also done in order to protect dental personnel and their patients from the virus. CDA, ADA and most state dental organizations issued recommendations consistent with the federal and respective state authorities regarding how to apply the guidance in serving patients during the crisis.


In addition to enormous advocacy for economic relief, the next critical phase of work is to address recommendations regarding when the profession may resume thorough patient care and what practice changes will be needed to provide that kind of care.

  CDA President Richard Nagy, DDS, and California State Dental Director Jay Kumar, DDS, have established a workgroup composed of dental practitioners, academicians and researchers to help establish the recommendations for this futuristic path.

The workgroup’s return-to-practice guidance will be informed by dental office infection control fundamentals and Covid-19 specific research and advisories. Also, the workgroup is monitoring federal and state advisories and conditions for reopening the economy.

While there are many details that still need evaluation, what is certain is that significant steps must be taken to restart the broader economy and dentistry. Providing frequent close-contact, high-aerosol procedures that are common in dentistry will require meeting several conditions. The two most vital components to this would be the wide availability of rapid testing and sufficient availability of PPE, which is in short supply, as we are all well aware.

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In order to get back to normal, here’s an infection control checklist for reopening the practice after Coronavirus closures.

  • Safe practices

When practices do begin seeing patients on a routine basis, safe practices infection prevention consultant and speaker Jackie Dorst, RDH, BS, doesn’t expect everything will look just the way it did before it was put on pause. “There won’t be one big opening of the gates and saying that everything’s all clear. It’s going to be a gradual thing. Densely populated areas may be a little slower to resume medical and dental services than rural areas that are sparsely populated.” Dorst also believes that waiting rooms will need to be reorganized to limit exposure to both patients and staff.

  The patient ideally should be met at the door, greeted, temperature taken, given a mask, a wellness screening, made to practice hand hygiene before they’re even seated in the operatory. It’s definitely going to require schedule planning and time on the dental team’s part

  • PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)


Personal protective equipment has always been an important component of infection control efforts at the dental practice. But, in a Covid-19 world, that equipment becomes even more important- along with its proper use and availability. One likely change is the type of PPE worn by staff, Dorst says, and the guidelines surrounding PPE that will become even more stringent.

  From now on, a dental assistant is going to have to wear an N95 respirator mask, with a full-face shield over it, and then an isolation gown, rather than just the clinic jacket or scrubs that they might have worn earlier. 

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  • Equipment maintenance

This downtime has given practices the opportunity to address proper preparation and availability of dental instruments and equipment. Taking stock and getting the input of hygienists and assistants will make sure the office is ready for a full schedule post Coronavirus. Your team will appreciate being heard and the practice will be in great shape when things are in full swing again. Make sure ordering dental supplies in bulk is on the top of your list.


Putting equipment back into use shouldn’t be difficult, but keep in mind it has been sitting unused and unmaintained for weeks. Be sure to properly service the equipment according to manufacturer instructions.

  • Refreshing skills

Now is a great time to brush up on infection control policies and procedures, before patients walk through the door. It’s the perfect time to train on OSHA and Infection Control as well as take on written programs like the Exposure Control Plan. If you already have a process in place for screening for tuberculosis and other aerosol transmissible diseases, then it can be modified to include conditions like Covid-19.


It’s also very important to ensure that the practice has people in their proper safety roles, such as an infection control coordinator or a safety officer. But remember, safety is not just one person’s job, it is everyone’s job. However, a person in charge who oversees the program is extremely beneficial.

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Get Your Home Ready For Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) (What Can I Do To Prevent The Coronavirus Disease At Home?)

SARS-CoV-2 or (Covid-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly emerging novel coronavirus. Most people who get infected with the Covid-19 virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness and recover without requiring special treatment; however, older people and those with underlying medical problems like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer are more likely to have complications while contracted with the coronavirus.

The best way to prevent and slow down transmission is to informed yourself about the Covid-19 virus, how it may affect your body, and how it spreads. The best way to protect yourself and others from infection is by washing your hands or using an alcohol-based rub as often as possible.

The Covid-19 virus spreads primarily through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose when an infected person coughs or sneezes, so it’s important that you also practice proper etiquette when coughing or sneezing like coughing into your elbow.

Before a Covid-19 outbreak occurs in your community it is important to plan. It’s unknown just how long a Covid-19 outbreak could last in your community. Depending on the severity of the outbreak, public health officials may recommend community actions designed to help keep people healthy and reduce exposures to Covid-19 Local public health officials may make recommendations appropriate to your local situation. Creating household plan can help protect your health and the health of those in your community. In the event of a local outbreak in your community you should create the a household plan that is centered around the needs and daily routine of your household members.

Prevent coronavirus disease at home

  • Talk with those who need to be included in your plan. Meet with household members, other relatives, and friends to discuss what to do if a Covid-19 outbreak occurs in your community and what the needs of each person will be. This can be done or FaceTime, Skype, or Zoom if you’re unable to meet face to face.
  • Plan ways to care for those who might be at greater risk for serious complications. There is limited information about who exactly may be at risk for severe complications from Covid-19 illness. From the data that is available for Covid-19 patients, and from the data of related coronaviruses such as SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV, it’s seems that older adults and people who have underlying medical conditions are more at risk for serious complications. Early data suggest older people are more likely to have serious Covid-19 illness. If you or your household members are at an increased risk for Covid-19 complications, please consult with your healthcare provider for more information about monitoring your health for symptoms suggestive of Covid-19. The Centers for Diease Control (CDC) is a good source of information to help stay informed.
  • Get to know your neighbors. Talk with your neighbors about emergency planning. If your neighborhood has a website or social media page, consider joining it to maintain access to neighbors, information, and resources.
  • Identify aid organizations in your community. Create a list of local organizations that you and your household can contact in the event you need access to information, health care services, support, and resources. Consider including organizations that provide mental health or counseling services, food, and other essential supplies.
  • Create an emergency contact list. Ensure your household has a current list of emergency contacts for family, friends, neighbors, carpool drivers, health care providers, teachers, employers, the local public health department, and other community resources.
  • Practice good personal health habits and plan for home-based actions.
  • Practice preventive actions daily. Remind everyone in your household the importance of consistency when practicing these habits. It can help prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses:

- Avoid close contact with people who are sick

- Stay home when you are sick, except to receive medical care.

- Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue

- Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects daily using regular household detergent and water.

- If surfaces are dirty, they should be cleaned using a detergent and water prior to disinfection.

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  • Wash your hands with soap and water for at least twenty seconds; especially after going to the bathroom, before you eat, and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if possible. Always wash your hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.

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  • Choose a room in your home that can be used to separate sick household members from those who are healthy. Identify a separate bathroom for the sick person to use, if possible. Plan to clean these rooms, as needed, when someone is sick.

Plan for potential changes at your workplace

  • Learn about your employer’s emergency operations plan. Discuss sick-leave policies and telework options for workers who are sick or who need to stay home to care for sick household members. Learn how businesses and employers can plan for and respond to Covid-19.

During a Covid-19 outbreak in your community: ACT

During an outbreak in your community, protect yourself and others by:

- Staying home from work, school, and all activities when you are sick with Covid-19 symptoms, which may include fever, cough and difficulty breathing.

- Keep away from others who are sick

- Limit close contact with others as much as possible (about 6 feet)

- Put your household plan in  action

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Are Masks Effective Against the Coronavirus Disease? When & How To Use Masks

At the beginning of what officials warned could be the deadliest week of the coronavirus pandemic, the United States recorded more than 1,200 coronavirus deaths in 24 hours, bringing the total number to 32,000 as of Thursday, April 16th according to NBC’s official tally.

Coronavirus disease (Covid-19) is an infectious disease caused by an unknown virus. The disease causes respiratory illness (like the flu) with symptoms such as cough, fever, and in more severe cases, difficulty breathing. You can protect yourself by washing your hands, avoid touching your face, and coming into close contact (1 meter or 3 feet) with people who are unwell.

The novel coronavirus disease spreads primarily through contact with an infected person when they cough or sneeze. It also spreads when a person touches a surface or an object that has the virus on it. We’re going to be highlighting some basics about the effectiveness of facial masks, when they’re necessary, and how to use masks to  to stay safe and avoid spreading the coronavirus.

Do masks work to protect against the coronavirus disease?

Ordinary medical masks cannot protect against the new coronavirus when used alone. Wearing a mask alone will not prevnt the current virus, it’s best to combine other preventive measures as well. The World Health Organization or WHO only recommends the use of masks in specific cases.

If you have cough, fever, or difficulty breathing, you should wear a mask and seek medical care. If you do not have these symptoms, you do not have to wear masks because there is no evidence that they protect people who are not sick.

However, if you are healthy, but you are taking care of a person who may be infected with the new coronavirus, then you should wear a mask whenever you are in the same room with that person. Remember, if you choose to wear a mask, use it and discard it properly. Clean your hands extensively with soap and water or hand sanitizer if you’re unable to access water and soap.

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When and how to wear medical masks to protect against coronavirus

If you do not have any respiratory symptoms such as fever, cough, or runny nose, you do not need to wear an ordinary medical mask. Masks alone can give you a false feeling of protection and can even be a source of infection when not used correctly. Masks should only be used by healthcare workers, caretakers, and by people who are sick with symptoms like fever and cough.

Who is at higher risk?

According to the CDC, early information shows that some people are a higher risk of getting very sick from Covid-19. This includes older adults and people of any age who:

- Have serious underlying medical conditions, such as heart, lung, or liver disease; diabetes; moderate to severe asthma; severe obesity; and renal failure.

- Have a weakened immune system, including those who are undergoing or have undergone cancer treatments.

- Pregnant women should also be monitored since they are known to be at risk with severe viral illness; however, to date data on Covid-19 has not shown an increased risk for women who are pregnant.

- If you are at higher risk for serious illness from Covid-19, it is critical for you to take actions to avoid getting sick.

- Stay home, avoid close contact with others and follow the other steps above

- Call your healthcare provider if you have concerns or ask about obtaining extra necessary medications in case you need to stay home for a prolonged period of time.

- Call a medical professional as soon as Covid-19 symptoms start, if you are at higher risk.

How are facemasks effective, you ask?

They’re effective because those who are healthcare workers and caretakers come into close contact with ill individuals, so the healthcare workers are at higher risk of catching Covid-19. Sick people who are being taken care of should wear masks in order to protect others from getting the virus. This is how healthcare workers, caretakers, or individuals who have fever and cough should use the mask:

- Before touching the mask, clean your hands with an alcohol based hand rub or soap and water.

- You must inspect the mask for tears and holes.

- You must verify which side is the top. It’s usually where the metal piece is.

- Identify the inside of the mask which is usually the white side.

- Fit the mask on your face and pinch the metal strip/stiff edge so it molds to the shape of your nose.

- Adjust the mask on your face covering your mouth and chin, making sure there are no gaps between your face and mask.

- Do not touch the front of the mask while using it to avoid contamination.

- If you accidently touch it, clean your hands.

How to dispose a mask?

- To take off the mask, remove the elastics from behind, without touching the front and while keeping it away from your face.

- Discard the mask immediately in a closed bin and clean your hands.

- It is important not to re-use a mask and you must replace it with a new one as soon as it gets damp.

Remember, the best way to protect yourself from the new coronavirus is by frequently cleaning your hands with an alcohol-based rub and soap and water.

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FTC Judge Finds Evidence Large Dental Manufacturers Conspired to Block Dental Buying Groups

Healthy competition is a cornerstone of the American economy. While price is largely a result of supply and demand, everyone should be able to come to the playing field and compete in a free market. Market forces should determine who is competitive and successful and who fails due to poor quality or inflated price tags. But when big businesses collude together to fix prices artificially or block smaller competitors, it is the consumer who suffers. This concept is true for any product, including dental supplies.

A Federal Trade Commission (FTC) administrative judge recently found compelling evidence that three large dental manufacturers/suppliers – Benco, Schein, and Patterson – conspired to prevent dental buying groups from accessing legitimate discounting and discouraged them from offering competing products to their customers. Also known as group purchasing organizations (GPOs) or buying clubs, buying groups are composed of independent dental practitioners who collectively negotiate savings on dental supplies. These groups provide small “mom and pop” dentists with the same discount opportunities that large group practices or corporate dental groups enjoy.

The big three companies mentioned above feared the effect this group buying power could have on their profits. Instead of competing honestly for buying groups’ business, Benco, Schein, and Patterson agreed to shut out these buying groups. In other words, they conspired to withhold discounts from buying groups and even collectively refused to negotiate with these groups.

The directive to “blacklist” buying groups came from the highest levels of these powerful companies, and the FTC judge found that they likely violated the antitrust provisions of the Sherman Act. The executives’ actions were egregious, and the evidence was overwhelming. For example, here is an excerpt of an email that Chuck Cohen, the managing director at Benco, sent to other Benco officials when he heard that Patterson was considering offering discounts to the New Mexico Dental Cooperative buying group:

“We don’t recognize buying groups… I’ll reach out to my counterpart at Patterson to let him know what’s going on…”

Cohen sent an email to Paul Guggenheim, the president of Patterson, and Guggenheim responded:

“Thanks for the heads up. I’ll investigate the situation. We feel the same way about these.”

Guggenheim then ordered his vice president of sales to pull out of the New Mexico partnership. These are just small examples of the conspiracy. The emails and phone calls went on and on, with Schein taking part as well. The three companies canceled appearances at buying group trade shows and continued to encourage each other not to work with buying groups.

Fortunately, this unethical and illegal conduct has not gone unanswered. The FTC has denied a motion put forth by Patterson for summary dismissal of the charges, and the case will go to trial.

Although it seems like the big companies will use every dirty trick to stifle competition and keep prices artificially high, some businesses still work for the little guys. While huge outfits like the three companies in the FTC action are beholden to their shareholders and ultra-wealthy executives, Noble Dental Supplies works for the benefit of our customers – no matter how small or large.

We have been in the dental supply industry for 40 years and remain dedicated to providing high-quality products at significantly discounted prices. We built our reputation on personal relationships, and we will never compromise on quality or dependable service.

Whether to Buy or Lease a Dental Office

Risky Dentistry Procedures that Lead to Malpractice Lawsuits

The American Board of Legal Medicine reports that just over 13% of all professional malpractice claims are filed against dentists. From 2004 to 2014, there were more than 32,000 claims of malpractice brought against dentists, resulting in a malpractice payment in nearly 17,000 cases and an adverse action in roughly 13,500 more. These figures are significant enough for all dental professionals to be aware of the most common types of malpractice claims and the riskiest procedures for claims against dentists.

        Remember that to bring a successful case for dental malpractice, an injured patient must satisfy these four elements of negligence:

  • A dentist-patient relationship;

  • The appropriate medical standard of care under the circumstances;

  • A breach in the standard of care that caused harm to the patient; and

  • Injury to the patient.

Without clearly establishing or proving each of these four elements, a patient will not be able to recover damages. Even so, a complication or injury resulting from a dental procedure could mean potential litigation, a blemish on the dentist’s record, and added expense and time away from the practice.

Common Procedures Can Be Risky Procedures

One author’s research of court proceedings shows that some of the most common types of dental malpractice are infections caused by the improper sterilization of equipment, the failure to diagnose and treat periodontal disease, and the misdiagnosis of some other dental condition.

This research lends itself to the contention that many incidents that result in a dental malpractice claim aren’t the most complex or difficult dental procedures, like a dental surgery. For example, one of the most common procedures found to be the source of medical negligence claims against dentists is a complication from a tooth extraction. In many instances, a complication arises in this procedure, the incident is exacerbated by the dentist failing to provide the opportunity for informed consent from the patient, or the absence of proper referral protocols if there’s an injury during the extraction procedure. Let’s look more at tooth extraction and other risky procedures.

Tooth Extraction

Another recent study found that out of nearly 250 cases of dental malpractice, the most common malpractice claim stemmed from a tooth extraction procedure. From those 63 cases, many of the incidents involved infections (23)—all of which necessitated the patient’s hospitalization. In fact, in Dentistry IQ, eight of these cases resulted in the death of the patient. Less severe, but quite serious injuries from tooth extractions included severed lingual nerves, severed inferior alveolar nerves, sinus perforations, fractured mandibles, TMJ injuries, and the extraction of the wrong tooth.

Endodontic Procedures

The second most common alleged negligence was from an endodontic procedure. Infection was the leading injury in claims arising endodontic therapy or root canal therapy. The Dentistry IQ research showed several life-threatening infections, with four fatalities. Of those life-threatening infections, seven were caused by brain abscesses and one was due to osteomyelitis. Four of these eight infections were fatal, and the other four caused irreversible brain damage. Other complications from this type of procedure are instruments left in canals, perforation of the sinuses or nerve damage, as well as air embolisms.

Endodontic procedures made up the second highest number of malpractice claims against general dentists in the Dentistry IQ study. Similar to tooth extraction preparation, teeth requiring endodontic therapy should be examined for possible curved or hooked roots, calcified canals, proximity to nerves and sinuses, and other potential complicating factors. On that note, one more factor in this type of claim was the fact that many of the defendant dentists were general dentists, rather than specialists. Failure to refer the patient to a specialist is also a contributing factor in an injury from an endodontic procedure.

Dental Implants, Crowns, and Bridges

Treatment planning was one of the most common allegations in this type of malpractice claim by patients, along with post-op infection. Again, many of these procedures were performed by general dentists, rather than specialists. Claims for injuries from crown and bridge procedures have a variety of complaints, such as open margins, overhanging restorations, and poor occlusion. Nonetheless, overall the claimants alleged a universal lack of treatment planning in these cases, with all of the defendants being general dentists.

Other Procedures

In addition to the procedures discussed above, these are also some of the more common causes of dental malpractice:

·         The failure to diagnose a condition, such as oral cancer, gingivitis, cavities, periodontal disease, or TMJ;

·         The failure to properly supervise an employee’s actions in a patient’s treatment;

·         Error in the administration of anesthesia;

·         The failure of a technique, like the improper use of formaldehyde-based root canal filling material;

·         The intended dental procedure wasn’t performed;

·         A contra-indicated procedure was performed, e.g., the removal of a healthy tooth by negligently misreading an x-ray or other dental records.

The Riskiest Procedures

As the research bares out, many of the most common dental procedures, such as teeth extractions and endodontic treatment can, in fact be the most susceptible to malpractice claims. Without proper planning and care, these are the riskiest procedures for a dentist to perform. A dentist’s failure to develop and follow a treatment plan and his or her failure to recognize a complication are two components of nearly all of the claims examined. Without these, many patients develop post-surgical infections, which can lead to further injuries.

A smoking history should also be taken, as many of these individuals are more susceptible to infection and complications from procedures. Research showed that a significant number of patients alleging malpractice smoked, resulting in infections that required hospitalization. A major oversight by dentists is the failure to take a history of smoking and to plan treatment accordingly.

        A word of advice is to take an ounce of prevention. Dental malpractice claims are increasing, as the payment ratio for dental claims is significantly higher than that of physician malpractice. Over 41% of dental claims are paid indemnity to patients—10% higher that medical claims resulting in payment. In other words, malpractice claims against dentists are more successful than those against physicians in the past several years. With this in mind, dentists should review their procedures and techniques, especially knowing how to recognize potential complications and guarding against infection, as well as administrative requirements beyond dental treatment, such as the office protocol for obtaining informed consent and treatment planning for every case.

Top 5 Vacation Spots in 2017

Okay, you’ve worked hard all year. Your dental practice can keep running without you for a couple of weeks while you recharge your battery. But where?

 

If you compare vacation lists, you’ll likely find very little in common. They all sound wonderful in one respect or another. This year, our theme is “exotic” and “mythical.” At the following locations, you’ll enter another world, touch a piece of history, or both.

 

Tbilisi, Georgia

If the legend is correct, then Georgians may have invented wine as much as 8,000 years ago. Their quaint capital is rich in heritage, visual appeal and mythical wonder. Georgia was the destination of Jason and his Argonauts when they were out and about to steal the Golden Fleece. At the far, eastern end of the Black Sea and nestled against the Caucasus mountains, Georgia was not only home to the Golden Fleece, but also the golden dragon which guarded it. This was where strong-willed, princess Medea met her future, Greek husband and helped him overcome the challenges posed by her father, the king. Georgia has beaches, mountains with ski lifts for winter fun, and lots more eye appeal in a country known for its grand beauty. Georgians speak a language which has affinities with Basque in northern Spain. In fact, Georgia and Spain once shared the name “Iberia.”

 

San Sebastián, Spain (Basque Country)

 

Nestled near the border to France, overlooking the Bay of Biscay and not far from the foothills of the Pyrenees Mountains, San Sebastián provides numerous opportunities to savor this Old World charm and otherworldly beauty. La Concha Bay provides enough visual splendor all by itself, but don’t linger too long. There’s much more to explore in this corner of Europe touched by antiquity. Not far to the north are the caves where modern, Cro Magnon man painted the walls as much as 40,000 years ago. The Basques speak an agglutinative language with vague similarities to Georgian. Seafood is especially good here. Some of the place names may look strange. One of the easiest peculiarities to solve is the “tx” sound, which is just like “ch.” For instance, the town of Getxo, in the Greater Bilbao metropolitan area, is pronounced, “GAY-cho.”

 

Cádiz, Spain

 

People have lived continuously in Cádiz longer than any other city in Western Europe. This elegant Spanish city started out as a Phoenician outpost as much as 3,100 years ago. Cádiz, in Andalusia, is not far from Gibraltar, to the South, and, across the strait, from Morocco and Africa. A short distance to the North resides the town of Palos de la Frontera, from where Christopher Columbus launched his legendary voyage of discovery in 1492. Besides its charming architecture, the city has a unique connection to the myth of Plato’s Atlantis. This region, once called Gadira, was said to have faced the legendary lost island roughly 11,600 years ago.

 

Bimini, Bahamas

 

Nothing says “tropical beaches” quite like the Bahamas. At less than a hundred miles east of Miami, Florida, the Bimini Islands, full of relaxing, seaside splendor, attract frequent visits from the mainland. Besides the nightlife, snorkeling and beachcombing, Bimini offers its own unique touch with the past. The “Bimini Road” or “Bimini Wall” was discovered in 1968. This structure, made of natural beach rock, was fashioned in a linear, straight-edged shape nearly a kilometer long. Some experts have compared this to artificial breakwaters built in the Mediterranean and found them to be similar. The first survey of the component beachrock found the stones to have been moved into position, likely by humans, because the orientation of many of the beachrock stones is no longer naturally facing the waves that formed them. Some researchers have speculated that the breakwater was evidence of one of the colonies of Atlantis, mentioned by Plato in his Timaeus and Critias dialogues.

 

Ponta Delgada, Azores

 

Subtropical splendor with rolling green pastures, immaculate beaches and towering mountains kissed with pristine lakes. We’re talking about the Azores. Portuguese is spoken, here.

 

Ponta Delgada is the largest city in the Azores containing nearly 70,000 people, and possessing nearby Marina Pêro de Teive which handles recreational boating. Twenty kilometers to the northwest stands the Sete Cidades Massif with its Blue and Green Lakes and a serenely breathtaking panorama of meadows and woodlands nestled in an ancient crater. A little over twenty kilometers to the west stands another mountain wonder—Lagoa do Fogo (Lake of Fire).

 

According to researchers R. Cedric Leonard and Rod Martin, Jr., the Azores may have been the tall mountains of Atlantis, mentioned by Plato. The legendary island was said to have stretched from here all the way along the Africa-Eurasia tectonic boundary to face Gadira (Cádiz) in southern Spain.

4 Things Dentists Can Learn from Steve Jobs

Who was Steve Jobs? And what does he have to do with your dental office?

 

Steve Jobs was more than an entrepreneur and business owner. He was an innovator on multiple levels. He not only helped put personal computers in our homes, but expanded on that with the iPad, iPhone and more. His company created both hardware and software and excelled at both. Today, Apple has an amazing 7.4% of the PC hardware market which puts it in 4th place, internationally. What is amazing about this feat is that Apple uses its own, non-windows operating system and its baseline computers are notoriously more expensive than entry-level Windows units. How all this happened is a testament to Steve Jobs and his creative vision.

 

But what does a computer geek have to do with a dental practice? Plenty! In fact, the wisdom of Steve Jobs, and innovators like him, can help just about anyone who is alive. The following list of 4 things are only a few of the dozens of priceless pearls of wisdom which Steve Jobs left to posterity.

 

  1. Put yourself in the other person’s shoes.

Steve Jobs not only demanded excellence from the people who worked for him, he demanded empathy for the customer. He was able to see what they needed even before they knew they had a need for it. The iPod, iPhone, and iPad were not only innovative, but also intuitive in their design and in the software interface that made them work. Your dental office has an interface. Do your customers know how to use it. Are they comfortable with it? Is there a better way to make it. Put yourself in your patient’s shoes and see your office from their eyes.

 

  1. Have passion for what you do.

Passion keeps you going when all else seems to be going wrong. You have to love what you do. But this “passion” doesn’t have to be something that bites you. Every feeling you have is created by you. You can build passion where once it did not exist. It’s all a matter of finding the fun in what you do. When you find that spark of fun, build on it.

 

  1. Fail forward.

In 1985, Steve Jobs was fired from the company he helped to build. Later, he would remark that his being fired was a good thing. It returned him to the freedom to innovate. It unburdened him to do things he had become cautious not to do. Our time in this world is limited. We need to remain fearless, but wise.

 

“I didn’t see it then,” Jobs told an audience of graduating students at Stanford University, in 2005, “but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.”

 

  1. Redefine the game.

Every business has competition. The big winners don’t play against their competition at the competitor’s level of the game; instead, those winners redefine the game, leaving the competition in the dust.

 

When Steve Jobs was fired from his own company, he invested $5 million of his own money in a crazy idea called Pixar—the company which produced Toy Story for Disney, and brought animation entertainment to a new level.

 

Bonus Idea: Hire only the best

Steve Jobs believed in giving more “bang for your buck,” as the saying goes. In the spirit of that wisdom, we couldn’t resist in delivering a bonus idea. Jobs could not have done all that he did if he didn’t have a team of the best people surrounding him. He believed in not hiring Bozos—incompetent people who create more work than they accomplish. If you surround yourself with people smarter than yourself, they challenge you to do a better job, and they end up making your business thrive.

 

So, can you use any of these in your dental practice? If you don’t see an immediate applicability, put these ideas on the back burner of your mind and let them simmer awhile. Do it with an attitude Steve Jobs cultivated for himself—expect great things from yourself and from those around you.

How to Select Music for Your Dental Practice

What to do When Patients Cancel Their Appointments

Life happens. We know. Sometimes we can’t avoid those little emergencies that overturn our world and leave us scrambling to catch up.

 

Canceled appointments seem to be on the rise, at least according to one survey. Follow-up appointments seem to be especially vulnerable to this phenomenon. The reason likely has to do with the economic environment. Many people are pinched financially and would rather put their money and time into other activities.

 

While it’s tempting to charge a patient for an appointment canceled at the last minute, consider how this looks from their viewpoint. Every time you’re late taking in the patient, they likely consider this a “missed appointment.” Should they bill you for having to wait an hour or more in the waiting room? If they showed up on time, and you’re late taking them in, how fair is it to charge them for the time you waited when no service was ever delivered? I know of some patients who have threatened to implement this kind of billing. That tactic on your part could lose you more than the one patient.

 

Consider this approach: If a patient cancels, have your office staff ask them if everything is okay. First of all, the concern should seem genuine. You’re here to help; not merely make a buck. Your attitude and the attitude of your staff make all the difference in the world on how the patient “perceives” the dental practice. Are you a friend or a foe? When your staff genuinely care and want to make certain that everything is okay in their world, the patient’s perception switches from “a business that’s merely trying to sell me on a service,” to “a loving caring clinic that wants to see me thrive.”

 

A canceled appointment is also an opportunity to engage the patient. Are they merely canceling because they view the problem as already handled? Is the follow-up merely a costly formality to them? Is there really a good reason for them to come back into the office, other than another opportunity for your practice to make more money? Is there a danger to skipping the follow-up? If so, clarify what that danger is. Don’t inflate it, but don’t avoid it, either. Inform the patient so they are better equipped to make a decision based on the best knowledge. Scaremongering will likely backfire. It seems that more and more of the public are taking the time to search the internet for answers. If you inflate the dangers in order to scare them into coming back, they may see through this and leave altogether. Dishonesty is not the best policy, naturally.

 

So, here’s the bottom line: Treat canceled appointments as a chance to build greater rapport with your patients. Treat these opportunities as a method for opening up a deeper dialog. Sometimes, such a conversation reveals the real problem. If they lost their job or their insurance, this gives you or your staff the opportunity to discuss payment plans. If the patient is saving their money so their child can get braces, count that as a blessing. You might even find a way to turn such a story into an award ceremony for “Best Parent of the Month,” or something similar. Their canceled appointment could result in greater exposure and more new clients.

 

Should Your Practice Try to Win Awards?

Winning awards sounds nice, but what will it do to help my dental practice? That’s a good question and it deserves a thorough, well-reasoned answer.

 

Perhaps the most potent fact to consider on this topic is that people like winners. They like being associated with winners. They feel that somehow your good fortune will rub off on them. It’s a bit like moths to the flame, only better. Your reputation is part of what attracts your client base. The opposite idea is easy to imagine, but we don’t want to go there. Bad reputations are obviously bad for business; good ones are what we want.

 

Winning awards is part of image building. Don’t ever forget that you are constantly in the sales game—selling yourself and your dental practice to your customers and to your community.

 

With the economy languishing in negative territory with little hope of a recovery any time soon, we all need to take advantage of every possible point of leverage available to us. Competition is tough, especially with the burgeoning growth of Dental Support Organizations.

 

Every opportunity to win an award for your business and your dental skills should be seized with glee. Each one is another opportunity to polish off your star in the eyes of your patients and in those of the community in general. But when you do win one of those awards, make a big deal about it. Put up party decorations for a week. Put a plaque on the wall with a colorful arrow pointing to it—“Another Award Won”—and include the date. Add the award to your appointment cards. Add a notice to your website home page. Post a notice in your front window and keep it there for a month (but no more).

 

But more than that, you need to keep thinking outside the proverbial “box.” Besides winning awards, how about creating awards for others? If you see something exceptional in your community, why not create an award in your name, or in the name of your dental practice, and make a big news event out of it. Receiving awards makes you look good, but giving awards makes you look even better. Like the old master once said, “It’s better to give than to receive.” And people respond to such generosity. Yet, so it all doesn’t seem so self-serving, consider extending the generosity to anonymous awards and gifts. There is something truly powerful about actions taken that are not based on any form of self-concern.

 

What kinds of awards should you pursue? Certainly, you’ve heard of a few dental awards. And why not include every continuing education certificate you earn? Each one shows that you are staying up with the latest in dental knowledge and procedures. Likely, none of your patients know about this, unless you tell them. Making a celebration out of each one tells them in a way that doesn’t seem like you’re hamming it up or overdoing it. But go beyond dentistry. Check into the Better Business Bureau and other commerce-related organizations. Check out philanthropic associations and work with them in doing outreach to the poorer sections of your community. All of these make you a more holistic part of your neighborhood and your neighbors will appreciate that.

 

Can Buying New Furniture Boost Your Revenue?

Compare these two images:

 

  1. You walk into a dark, dinghy office with dirty windows, threadbare furniture and lots of grime and filth on the floor.

  2. You walk into a bright, pristine office with sparkling windows, and elegant, new furniture decorating polished floors.

 

Naturally, you’re not comfortable in the first one. You want to get out of there as quickly as possible. The second one at least feels comforting and welcoming. The people there have taken the time to make it as approachable as possible.

 

In the minds of customers, who can decide to go elsewhere, perception is everything. Every little detail can be a reason to stay or to leave.

 

The big question is, “How much will new furniture help?” There’s no way to know this until you try it, but that can prove to be expensive, if you don’t use a good measure of caution.

 

Finding the right furniture at a discount sometimes takes extra work. Instead of spending thousands on the finest, store-bought furniture, consider garage sales or estate sales. Yes, you’ll likely run into a lot of junk, but occasionally you’ll find something that is perfect and at a price that is shockingly comfortable.

 

If you’re feeling impatient when you do this shopping, then stop and go do something more constructive with your time. Impatience will likely result in a bad purchase.

 

Consider this analogy. If you’re a guy and you’re out with your wife shopping for a party dress, you know what it’s like to have her try on dozens of outfits for which you always say, “That’s nice.” But occasionally, she will try on an outfit that “clicks.” There’s something about it that is right on so many levels, you have to buy it. In a way, it’s like “love at first sight.” Everything fits. The designer was one of those big names before anyone knew him.

 

A good, clean environment says, “I care about you.” Good, new-looking furniture says the same thing. You may think about how much the furniture costs, but consider how much it costs to lose existing customers.

 

Now, consider the opposite effect. New furniture says “prosperity.” That translates as “success,” and “doing the right thing.” If you’re waiting room is in any way grungy, how likely are you to have clients recommend your dental practice to a relative or friend. They may start to say something, but frown and purse their lips when they remember how bad it all looks. Then, they may wonder why they, themselves, are staying at the same dental practice. The little things don’t have to be expensive to have each and every one of your patients look upon you and your practice with favorable eyes.

 

Also, you don’t have to have a professional interior decorator take charge of the project. If you don’t have the budget for such things, consider a bright student at a local college for the project. They can add the project to their skimpy resume, and you get some helpful advice from someone before they can charge the proverbial “arm and a leg.”

 

 

Is Your Dental Supplier RIPPING You Off?

More than likely, your dental supplier is ripping you off. How can we be so sure? Well, let’s look at the mechanics of the marketplace. As a professional, it’s your job to keep your business—your dental practice—running smoothly. That includes remaining profitable. You want to keep costs low and income high. But that’s what your supply chain wants to do, too. If their profits can be improved by selling you something at an outrageous markup, but make you think you’re getting a great deal, then why wouldn’t they?

 

Every salesman has a long list of tricks to meet their quota and to earn their bonuses. Ripping you off is part of the equation. Pricing is a relatively murky subject with many shades of gray and very little actual black and white clarity. Prices are typically set at what the market will bear. If a product has competition, then you can compare prices from different sources. And this opens the door to your solution. To keep from being ripped off by your dental suppliers, you need to do one thing summed up by three simple words: “do your homework.”

 

Doing your homework to keep from getting ripped off is relatively straightforward, but it helps to have a few pointers. Have someone in your office do the legwork for you, researching prices from various suppliers. Naturally, product quality is always a concern, but you need to decide what is truly important and what is merely “nice.” If one product comes with an attachment you would rarely, if ever, use, then why bother? If a different brand or supplier offers the same product without the attachment, but at a substantial savings, then it would be smart to consider making a change to the less expensive option.

 

One trick suppliers sometimes use is to offer one version of a consumable product at a discount, while marking up a more attractive package. For example, a 5-pack might be offered at a discount, but the 10-pack is marked up. So, thinking you’re saving money buying in bulk, you may end up paying more.

 

You may know your dental equipment well, but sometimes you get hit in areas outside of your own specialty. That could be office supplies or computer equipment. Say, for instance, you purchase a computer for your front office and that it has the latest processor for fast computing and an HD screen for crystal clear viewing of patient records. Not doing your homework, leaves you open to getting ripped off. If your dental office software requires 8 GB of memory for optimum usage, but your computer system came with only 4 GB, then you’ll have to upgrade your memory. Quite often, systems have their memory slots filled with the existing memory, so you can’t merely add on more memory; you have to yank out the existing memory and replace it with a full-price upgrade. If you don’t shop around, or otherwise do your homework, your supplier could add a hefty markup on the larger memory modules.

 

The bottom line is that you have to realize that a supplier is naturally going to be looking out for their own profits. Any good salesman is going to want to make you think you’re getting a great deal that makes them lots of profit and helps them achieve their quota that much more quickly. Doing your homework is the simplest way to ensure your own profitability.

What do Dental Patients Really think about Your Office?

In a perfect dental world, your clients would always love you and remain loyal patients throughout their lives. Snap out of it! In the real world, what patients really think about your office can be incredibly fickle. All it takes is one poor experience for one customer to spoil your entire client list. One patient may make it a point to tell others of their perceived injustice. If they think you don’t care, this only makes it worse, and the injustice becomes an outrage.

 

Sometimes, appearances are everything. This includes visual appearances, but also other forms of perception, too (smell, touch, temperature, behavior). Naturally, you’re not going to please everyone all the time, but you have to remain sensitive to their needs.

 

Let us say, for instance, that one patient complains that your office is too hot. If they’re the only client who says this, consider accommodating them with a fan turned on low to help keep them stay cool. By taking the extra effort, you make them feel pampered, but also you keep your electricity bill down. If too many patients complain about the heat in your office, perhaps nudging the air conditioning a bit would be a good thing. Don’t always go by your own comfort level.

 

Another example of perception gone awry involves what patients can do to your office without you knowing. It pays to revisit the client experience frequently. Go through their steps to see what they see and to feel what they feel. This way, you might discover that the front entrance door handle sometimes feels slippery and tacky. Could one of your patients overdo their hand lotion regimen? They could make the experience far worse for other patients and prospective clients.

 

If your waiting room furniture is becoming a bit threadbare, then plan to have it replaced. But you don’t need to ruin your finances with immediate upgrades. Until the budget can allow for the purchase, consider some thrifty, interim measures, like colorful seat covers. Make certain to get feedback on your ideas before implementing them. At the very least, ask your office staff for suggestions.

 

In the world of winning hearts, perception is everything. If any of your clients perceive something to be true, your first concern is to show them that you care or that you will take action, not that they are wrong. Sometimes, asking a patient for more information will reveal a misunderstanding, rather than an actual mishap. Sometimes, asking questions, instead of making statements can help a patient come to a new understanding without perceiving you or your staff as a threat.

 

In order to dig deeper, you need to ask patients directly. As part of their time in the waiting room, have them fill in a short survey. Include questions like, “What would make your visit to the dentist more enjoyable?” To keep your patients motivated, consider knocking off a small amount from the dental bill for the “best” survey picked each month. This could be a low-cost way to keep your patients thinking about how to improve your business. You might even pick from the monthly winners, a winning survey for the quarter or for the year with an even bigger prize. Surveys can give you greater insight into the perception of your patients. Giving them a valuable incentive helps to keep them interested. Not all great ideas or insights happen during the filling out of a survey. Sometimes, the ideas happen later or between visits. Having a meaningful reward may motivate more of your patients to jot down the ideas or perceptions when they come to mind so they can add them to the survey on their next visit.

 

Having more eyes and ears open to your office’s improvement could help your dental practice go from merely surviving to thriving. So, make it even easier for them to contact you with suggestions and observations. Have a suggestion box in your waiting room with a bright, colorful sign explaining the offer and the need for feedback. On appointment cards, include your office email address or the contact form on your dental office website. Each one of these can help you know what patients really do think about your dental office.

 

How to Increase Dental Patient Visits

Every dentist wants to increase patient visits. In our current economic environment, more and more patients are opting for insurance plans with higher deductibles. This helps to keep their insurance rates lower, but the ugly side effect is that those patients put off visits to keep out-of-pocket expenses at a minimum, too.

 

Short of solving the economic problems of the world, how do you overcome this phenomenon? How do you drive in more patient visits?

 

Outreach and education can help. One thing we know from human nature is that most people have a habit of avoiding pain. This includes avoiding all thoughts of dental visits until it becomes impossible to ignore them. Part of your outreach might include a colorful cartoon to explain how waiting will only create more pain and problems. And it could end up being more expensive in the long run. Tell them how a simple cavity could escalate into the need for a more costly root canal.

 

For some of your patients, the “stick” of comparative pain may not work; you may need to entice them with more “carrot” of pleasure. For instance, make it easy for your patients to pay for their visits on a monthly payment plan.

 

Another option might be to barter your services. Say, for example, that you need electrical work for your office or home and your patient is an electrician. One endodontist in California liked his patient’s artwork so much, he gave the client a hefty discount in exchange for one of their paintings.

 

They key, here, is to look at the problem from the viewpoint of the patient. How can you decrease their pain while increasing their pleasure?

 

From the standpoint of bartering, consider joining or establishing a barter co-op in your area. If you don’t need electrical work, but need help with a finicky computer system, perhaps some other business in your area needs your electrician patient’s help at the same time that they have a computer expert customer who could fulfill your needs. A barter swap could extend your reach. Such creative, out-of-the-box thinking could keep your patients coming more often, because the hurdles are no longer so high. They understand more completely the risks of putting off a needed visit. And they see the benefits of timely visits.

 

Share this article with your staff. Have a brainstorming session with them to see what wild ideas come to their minds. Then use those “wild” ideas as catalysts to help your team come up with something which your dental office can implement.

 

If you’re not familiar with the proper steps in good brainstorming, the following, brief overview can help.

 

The goal of brainstorming is to come up with good ideas that might not otherwise have been obvious or even possible to imagine. The first phase of good brainstorming involves a “shotgun” free-for-all of ideas. One of your staff should take notes or perhaps record the audio for later transcription. During this phase, criticism is forbidden. Simply start with the first word or phrase that comes to mind. Any and all ideas are welcome, no matter how crazy, irrelevant or non sequitur they may seem.

 

After two or three minutes of craziness, take your list of words and review them, thoughtfully and with critical thinking. But be sure to throw in a good measure of creative fun, too. Like Albert Einstein once said, imagination is more important than knowledge. Such creativity can take you places you never thought possible. While reviewing your list of “crazy” words, you might ask for each term or phrase, “If this word were the key to solving this problem, what would that solution look like?” From this second phase discussion, you achieve a list of ideas. Again, keep criticism out of the discussion. Creativity is sometimes timid and needs to be nurtured. Criticism comes later.

 

The third and final phase of brainstorming is where the criticism and discussion takes over. Ask, “How could this idea work? What would it take?”

 

Brainstorming is a tool. It requires a degree of skill. It can be done in a group or as a solitary exercise. Out of such brainstorming, great ideas are possible, especially if you expect and allow the best to happen. And when increasing dental patient visits is the desired outcome, everyone wins.

4 Tips for Dentists Seeking Therapeutic Background Music

When patients are “in the chair” three senses become strongly active, especially for those who are nervous or tense. These are:

1.       Smell

2.       Touch

3.       Hearing

That’s why I’d like to address the importance of having a musical therapy strategy for your dental practice. And surprisingly, it’s not just your patients who benefit from a well thought out background music strategy. Your staff will as well.

After speaking with numerous dentists, it’s become very clear that many practitioners do not have a plan regarding the best types of music to play in their offices. This is unfortunate.

For example, many dentists still utilize the following:

·         FM Radio

·         Satellite Radio

·         CDs

While these options may seem to make sense, none of them give you complete freedom and control over what your patients are listening to. After all, when you go to a restaurant and order food, do you let the waiter decide what you should eat? Of course not. Instead, you make a specific effort to order the most satisfying meal based on your individual dietary needs and tastes. The same goes for your dental practice, and the use of music within it.

So, let me give you 3 tips to maximize the effectiveness of music in your dental office in the interest of making the experience as positive and relaxing as possible for your patients:

 

1) Strike a Balance

The biggest mistake I see dentists making is that the music they play for their patients is the same music that can be heard by the staff handling administrative duties.

This is a big mistake.

While certain subscription services dentists utilize may play music that’s appropriate for patients, it may not be suitable for staff that are not directly involved in patient procedures.

Would you want your administrative staff listening to relaxing music? Probably not, right? After all, you want them motivated and energetic, not drowsy.

Also, you will want your patients to listen to music that will soothe them and distract them from their potential discomfort. What you don’t want is heart-pumping music that may lead to feelings of anxiety.

So, the solution is simple: Ensure you have one sound system set up for your clinical rooms, and another sound system set up for your administrative areas.

Your waiting area should also have the same music as your clinical rooms. After all, you want your patients to be relaxed from the second they walk in, to the time they leave.

2) Patient Music Considerations

When it comes to relaxing your patients, your first line of defense should always be their auditory sense.

Because of this, you want to totally eliminate distractions such as unwanted advertisements, disc jockey announcements, or any static and unwanted interference.

Ideally, each of your patient rooms should have surround sound and a perfect signal. Something as simple as using an iPod with pre-selected music is a great way to accomplish this.

If you’ve ever visited a spa, you know that a large emphasis is placed on setting the mood with a carefully selected playlist of soothing music. Your playlist and sound setup should be no different.

3) Staff Music Considerations

You want to ensure your staff is listening to music with at least 120 BPMs (Beats Per Minute), but no more than 150 BPMs. You can easily use Google to find songs like this.

This tempo is a great start for keeping your staff in an energetic and productive mindset. Of course, you’ll want to avoid music with explicit content or anything that could be considered graphic in nature. Furthermore, for intensive mental work, lyrics that are too prominent are destructive to mental focus.

Research shows that “intelligible” chatter—talking that can be clearly heard and understood—contributes strongly to a distracting environment. Shifting focus to figure out what someone else is saying is the reason why speech is often considered the most troublesome element of a noisy office. In one study, 48% of participants listed intelligible talking as the sound which distracted them the most.

Trying to engage in language-related tasks, such as writing, while listening to lyrics would be akin to holding a conversation while another person talks over you… while also strumming a guitar. So lyrics are often a no-go in these situations.

Lyrics might not have the same effect on creative tasks that don’t directly deal with “verbal architecture”. This study, which looked at software developers, suggested that music with lyrics might actually have helped their output while working.

The bottom line is to find the right balance of music to effectively match the kinds of activities that take place in the administrative areas of your practice.

4)  Long Playlist versus Short Playlists

The last consideration is the size of your music playlist. While not a real concern for patients, since the duration of their visits are limited, it does affect your staff, both in patient and administrative areas.

There is a debate between whether employees benefit more from shorter music playlists that create predictability, or longer playlists that minimize musical redundancy.

On one side, musical therapists agree that shorter playlists add predictability and less confusion in a working environment. However, repetition can lead to boredom, and eventually, to measurable levels of stress.

Once again, the key is to find the right playlist length for music to best serve the activities of your practice’s patient care and administrative staff.

 

How to Get More Patients With Less Effort

Getting more patients for your dental practice means more income, and more income means more investment into getting more patients and making them happy. It becomes a cycle of getting more patients, earning more, investing more, and getting even more patients. And the more you invest, the less effort it takes to start this cycle and keep it going!

 

Fortunately, for dentists of all budgets, it doesn’t have to be that expensive either. Every expense can be easily recouped with the revenue from new patients.  

 

Aside from money, you need to spend some time and effort collaborating with your team, or even DIY-ing it, to present the best version of your dental practice to your patients.

 

So what are some techniques to get more patients to your dental practice with little to no effort?

 

A conversion-optimized website

 

You need experts or at least some knowledge of SEO and conversion rates. For example, if your website gets 3,000 visits (or clicks) every month, but your conversion rate is less than 1%, your website is not working as it should.

 

For 3000 visits, your target conversion rate should be at least 3%, or 90 out of the 3000.

 

Now “conversion” can have several key performance indicators (KPI).

 

New subscribers to your newsletter? That’s a KPI. More views on your articles, more Likes on your Facebook, or more followers on your Twitter—those are also nice KPIs. But ultimately, your aim is for web visitors to become clinic visitors.

 

Your website should:

  • Answer questions and provide real value. Do you have blog posts for tips and guides on finding a dentist, taking a kid to the dentist, and information about certain treatments and surgeries?

  • Have an irresistible offer. GIVE THEM A REASON TO CALL. Real value isn’t just information. It also includes offers like free reports, free checklists, or discounts on dental services!

  • Have an easy booking platform, contact pages, etc. No complicated steps. One button for a call. One button for an online booking. And that’s it. They’re done! Don’t give them a chance to close the website before they’re done.

  • Be nice to look at and adjustable to different screen sizes. Internet users are highly visual creatures. You don’t need all the bells and whistles, but you do want a nice color scheme and easy-to-read fonts. About 98% of people now use their phones to browse the Internet. Is your website easy to read on a smartphone?

If you hire an expert to overhaul your site’s design and content, you could easily spend at least $1000, but your patients could pay that back for you if you get 3% conversion overnight.

A focus on your prospective clients and what they want and need

 

What do your patients need? Do you provide it in your website, your newsletter, your social media posts? Is there information they'd want to read about? Is your website optimized to the max so that they can find you?

 

Your online campaign needs to be benefit-driven. If you focus on providing real value to your prospective patients, you won’t have to “advertise yourself” at all. Which brings us to our next item:

 

Give them a reason to call. No logos or branding—DON’T begin an ad or flyer with YOUR name or logo. Make an irresistible offer instead.

 

Your PPC (pay per click) ads, your flyers, your articles—they should all be benefit-driven, remember? Sure, you can and should add your dental practice name, address, and number there, but somewhere at the bottom after the valuable content has been offered and delivered.

 

For example, suppose you successfully include your flyer in a tenant’s packet (which is awesome!). If that flyer is nothing but your logo, name, and details, it’s going in the trash almost instantly and will be forgotten.

 

Again, it's about your patients, not you. Hit their pain points and answer to what they need. That is how you grab their attention and bring them to your website and your clinic. Have an article worth reading, a discount they shouldn’t miss.

 

They're not interested in seeing your name in headlines. The reverse happens: they ignore you.

 

People are now inundated with ads all day. You stand out by grabbing your audience's attention. And you grab their attention by giving them a benefit, something they want and need. It could be something short and sweet, like a witty and funny cartoon of a dentist joke, or a discount for new neighbors!

 

This is how you make them remember you and choose you when they’re ready to have that appointment. GIVE THEM A REASON TO CALL. A discount, a risk-free offer, a free service?

Remember, the easiest thing for us to do when we see an ad is NOTHING. But when the ad is irresistible, that's when we do something!

 

The beauty of this is that you build a list of interested prospects. They want what you offer. They might not be ready now, but when they are, they'll choose your dental practice.

 

A referral bonus system

 

Word-of-mouth is still a powerful tool for marketing dental practices. So make it easy for your patients to recommend you to others. Have a review and testimonial form on your website or your social media page.

 

Track what you do, test everything, and be consistent.

 

Are your articles getting read and shared? Which sign ups are getting sign ups?

 

Track what's going on with your website so that you can fix what needs fixing. And be consistent.

 

Stick to these techniques. Don't stop. Hire a team to oversee this side of the business. Why do you think businesses launch email campaigns? It's not just ONE email that you send to each lead who signs up for your newsletter. The campaign lasts for months. You court your patients continually through emails, your website content, posts on social media; you don't stop.

 

Establish your brand, letting them see that they can rely on you for consistent and great content online, and it will follow that you’re the best dentist offline.

3 Tips to Hire the Best People for Your Practice

In the book, “How Google Works”, Google’s executive chairman Eric Schmidt said that hiring is the most important thing you can do in a business. This goes for your dental practice, too.

 

The reason is because employees are an extension of you and your services. Hiring the right people will increase patient satisfaction, and profits will increase. Hire the wrong people and you could end up in court. To help you hire the right people for your practice, here are 3 essential tips:

 

1) What to Look for

First and foremost, you want people with integrity. If you can’t trust what people do behind your back, you simply cannot hire them. You need to rely on references and reputation checks to make this analysis.

 

Second, you want intelligent people who can solve problems. Knowledge is great, but you are also looking for people with curiosity. This will not only help them solve problems, but identify potential problems and solve them before anything possibly damaging occurs.

 

Third, you want mature people. Mature people show empathy when needed, and respect other people’s emotions. Mature people also generally have a strong sense of humor, and don’t take themselves too seriously.

 

Fourth, you want people with good, strong positive energy that will lift everybody up, not drag everybody down. Such enthusiasm will carry your practice through your most stressful times, while making the good times even better. There is probably nothing more damaging to a practice than a staff with a negative attitude.

 

Fifth, you want people who have the courage to make tough decisions. One of the best ways to test this is by challenging what they know during the interview process. If you give them a scenario with the possibility of a few answers, do they defend their stance intelligently, or do they concede after mild criticism?

 

A strong conviction is as critical a characteristic as logically being able to admit a mistake.

 

All of these qualities can be assessed through the job interview.

 

2) How to Interview Candidates

Interviewing is the most important phase of the hiring process. While you may have a number of qualified candidates applying for your position, the interview phase will determine who is the most perfect fit for your practice.

 

Before we get started, NEVER hire anyone unless you are excited about them starting. If you have any doubts whatsoever, do NOT hire them. If anything, start the recruiting process over again until you find the right person.

 

Your staff is what essentially makes or breaks your reputation, and one inadequate hire can be the difference between your success or failure. This may sound extreme, but think of all of the activities and patient interactions that your staff performs on a daily basis. If you hire somebody that is only 85% qualified, that means that member of your staff will only reach an 85% peak of optimal performance on even their best days. When you hire someone, who meets 100% of your qualification for this position, their optimal peak is 100%, and you shouldn’t settle for anything less.

 

The choice is yours.

 

When you’re interviewing each candidate, act as if you’re hiring them to eventually lead your company. While this isn’t the reality, this mindset will truly help you judge whether this person will work hard, make informed decisions, grow with your practice, and lead it well into the future.

 

Never be intimidated if an applicant seems to have traits that you have a shortage of, such as energy. These are exactly the types of people you want!

 

So, when you’re interviewing each candidate, ensure you ask them open-ended questions that help you understand whether they meet the criteria you are looking for.

 

For example, tricky scenario-related questions, such as “what would you do in this situation” will help you to understand how each candidate balances duty, ethics, and intelligence to find the right solution to any given problem.

 

What you are really testing is how they makes decisions.

 

You also want to ensure each candidate fits your particular culture. A good way to test this is to introduce them to some of your current staff, and see what your people have to say about them.

 

Don’t forget that while someone may have thrived in another practice, it does not mean they will thrive in yours. Each practice is different, just like each candidate. Also, don’t forget that in a way, the candidate is interviewing you as well, and poor interview performance (being late, disorganized, etc.) could easily scare a great candidate away!

 

3) Test Your Hire

Finally, you want people who can get the job done correctly, and this brings us to the testing phase.

 

Attorney Anita York, who specializes in Dental Law, advises you to test each new hire with a 1-day temporary assignment. This way you can supervise how they work, and what level of expertise they currently have within their specialty.

 

Also, it eliminates your liability of potentially hiring the wrong person.

 

Ensure that you create a contract that will communicate this arrangement for one day of work for x hours and x pay, which will be paid by the close of business that day.

 

This way, you can easily ask them not return if necessary, and you will ensure all loose legal ends are tied up before you continue to a new candidate should that be your conclusion.

 

Also, ensure they do not interact directly with patients during this time. Have them do other specific functions because you should limit yourself to analyzing how they handle themselves with tasks typical tasks, at least until the testing process is over.

 

Once you see how they work, interact with others, and perform in your practice as a whole, you can make an educated decision as to whether or not they will be the right fit for your practice.

 

When to Tell Your Patient You Made a Mistake

4 Facebook Marketing Tips to Attract New Patients

People go online for information, socialization, entertainment, and to find products and services. Facebook has streamlined all of these functions in the most organized and easily accessible ways imaginable.

 

People can conveniently read all of the latest news headlines, while communicating with a former college roommate, and be posting pictures of their kids for everyone they know to enjoy, all in one place.

It’s truly amazing and powerful, and that power has truly unique benefits for your dental practice.

For instance, you can easily start getting more patients using Facebook.
Here are 5 tips you can start using to drive more patients with your practice’s Facebook page.

1) Have a website
Facebook is almost like a delivery truck for your business. You can create and send messages to your target audience with Facebook, but Facebook should not be your company’s main interface with the public.

The reason for this is because Facebook may not always be as popular as it is today, and you never want a third party resource to control all of your virtual business collateral.
So, ensure that you have a properly developed website with a blog where you can start creating and adding content.

2) Have a message
I have seen dozens of Dental Practice Facebook pages, and they have all been seemingly indistinguishable from one another.

Messages like “Don’t forget to brush your teeth!” followed by several clichéd sales pitches make these pages as boring as they are brandless.

Let me ask you a question: If you didn’t own your practice, would you follow your company’s Facebook page?

Probably not, and the reason is simple: Your page lacks compelling content.

Before you post on Facebook, you must ask yourself: Who is this message for, and will they enjoy it?

The great thing about this is that it’s fun and exciting to be creative!

You want to start a buzz with your Facebook page, and not just send bland updates to your audience. Every post you create should be aimed at being liked and shared by as many people as possible, otherwise what’s the point?

You used to post messages to Facebook just to post, but not anymore.

3) Some ideas for posting and sharing
Here are some great ideas you can start posting to your blog and sharing on Facebook to get new people following your practice online, and then calling your for dental services in the future:


1. Post pictures and stories you find relating to celebrities and the dental work they have had done. Talk about the benefits of having some or all of this work done, and why.
2. Talk about how dentistry has affected major events in history. For example, Doc Holliday was not only a famous gunslinger, but also a dentist.
3. Create a healthy debate by sending out surveys regarding different dental procedures and whether they’re important for different things, such as a promotion.

4) Advertise
Once you have some compelling content that is starting to get attention, spend a few dollars to advertise this post to local people within your geographical scope.
What’s great is that you are essentially paying to have people visit your website, and learn more about you.

Now you can create Facebook ads that target just these people, so you can eventually convert them into customers.
Creating content that informs, entertains, and gets people engaging with one another is always the key to a successful Facebook page that will increase your popularity and your sales.  

 

Is It Time to Get New Equipment (3 Ways to Know)

Whether you have the right equipment or not could make or break your business. This becomes obvious when your key equipment breaks down and you can’t do your job.

 

Of course, you will have your dental assistant do all of the daily and monthly maintenance routines to keep your equipment running smoothly. Eventually, though, equipment will break down. Nothing was built to last forever.

 

Before you purchase new equipment—especially equipment that costs more than $20,000—you need to spend a significant amount of time comparing your options and preparing for whatever transition is required.

 

1. The Equipment Can’t Be Repaired or Costs too Much to Repair

 

Perhaps you have a dental equipment repair specialist on call. They may be able to get you up and running again within minutes or hours, depending on what’s wrong. If they need a spare part, perhaps they’ll need a day or two. If your guy says the equipment is beyond repair or that there are no new spare parts, then an emergency purchase may be required. But this is not the best way to make such a purchase.

 

Any large purchase of hardware, or even software, should be done after careful study of your options. You need a few months to go through the literature, to see appropriate demonstrations, and to build your list of questions to make certain nothing jeopardizes the smooth operation of your dental practice.

 

2. The Tax Write-off is Too Good

 

Sometimes, business decisions come down to what the “bean counters” tell you to do. Accountants are typically smart people. They have to be to make sense of the insanity of tax laws and accounting practices.

 

But when you make the decision to purchase equipment for a tax write-off, make certain you do your due diligence in researching the best equipment for your practice. Here are some of the considerations to keep in mind:

  • Costs, of course.

  • How soon you’ll be using the equipment. Some dental offices have purchased equipment only to have it sit in storage for months or even years before putting it into use. If it’s late model equipment, this might not be a problem. But if it’s older equipment, soon to be discontinued, then you may not be able to repair it when it breaks down.

  • How well does this new equipment fit in with your existing equipment? Is it compatible with your existing system?

 

3. The Equipment is Critical to Staying Competitive

 

Let’s say a new technology has come out which does some part of the dental practice business far better than the older equipment. And let’s say that customers are asking for it or leaving because you don’t have it. Ouch!

 

Before you run out and purchase that new equipment, make certain that your perception of the problem is accurate. How many actual customers have you lost. How many customers asked about the new equipment? If it’s only one percent of your client base, you might be better off forgetting the purchase. But if you see a growing trend that’s accelerating, you may need to make an announcement that your office will soon be sporting the new equipment, too.

 

When desktop computers became available, few businesses adopted them. It didn’t take long, though, for office computers to become an essential part of most every dental practice. This is not the sort of equipment that patients would ask about, but customers would be able to feel the difference. An office without computers would not be as efficient. Tracking patients, schedules, insurance providers and payments from insurance companies are best done by computer systems.



References:

Carter, Jeff. (ND). “5 things you must know before purchasing clinical dental equipment.” Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from http://dentaleconomics.com/articles/print/volume-97/issue-9/features/5-things-you-must-know-before-purchasing-clinical-dental-equipment.html

 

Simpson, Kathy. (ND). “Do You Need to Upgrade Your Dental Equipment?” Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from https://sba.thehartford.com/industries/do-you-need-to-upgrade-your-dental-equipment

How to Make Patients See the Value in What You Do

Nothing can seem more frustrating than doing a great job and having no one recognize the superb work you’ve done.

 

Okay, we’re not talking about ego. Don’t let that get in your way. We’re talking about awareness on the part of your dental patients. When they see the value in what you do, they become champions for your cause.

 

Most people would rather not think about their teeth, most of the time. The world is much bigger than that. So, you need to be a part of their desire to put such concerns behind them. They need to see you as a member of their team, helping them get on with their lives. When they see you that way, they will be more likely to refer others to your business.

 

Giving Credit Where Credit is Due

 

If you are truly compassionate about your patients and their dental health, then this should all be easy. If you’ve solved a dental emergency for your patient, thank them for coming in when they did. Let them know in gentle terms how dangerous it could have been—what would’ve happened if they had let it go on longer.

 

Let your patients know that you’re here to help. Let them know that you want to help make their teeth something they don’t have to worry about, but that you need their help in doing so.

 

It’s the Little Things That Count

 

If your front waiting room is dirty, this screams to your patients and potential clients that you don’t care enough to clean up the place. If your front office staff are too busy to greet each of the clients as they come in, this also communicates a rather bleak message—the client doesn’t mean very much. That’s their ego, sure, but you have to be bigger and better than that. You have to be bigger than their ego and cater to their needs.

 

If a patient has to leave your practice because their insurance changes and your practice is not covered, the very least you can do is to spend a few minutes talking with them. Make their leave a pleasant experience. Tell them how much you’ve enjoyed working with them and ask if there is any way to work with their finances to keep their business. There may be nothing you can do, but taking the effort to reach out could mean future referrals from this ex-patient. It could mean getting them back should their insurance carrier change yet again. Communicating with your patients shows that you care.

 

Also, if you go out of your way to make patients comfortable, they will perceive this as a big plus. If there are techniques or equipment that reduce the amount of pain experienced, then your patients are going to love you for it. Of course, it doesn’t hurt to tell them what you’ve done (no pun intended).

 

If a prospective new client can’t fit into your busy schedule (and how delightful to be so busy), consider how valuable they could be to your business if you were to stay late to squeeze them in. Imagine ten years of having them as a steady customer. Imagine them referring others to your growing practice because you went out of your way to help when they really needed it.



References:

DentalVibe.com. (ND). Top reasons why your patients leave (and what you can do about it). Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from https://dentalvibe.com/blog/top-reasons-patients-leave-can/

 

Lotardo, Salvatore. (9/22/2016). “Building a fee-for-service practice: The value-driven alternative to dentistry as a commodity.” Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from http://dentaleconomics.com/articles/print/volume-106/issue-9/practice/building-a-fee-for-service-practice-the-value-driven-alternative-to-dentistry-as-a-commodity.html

5 Tips for Growing a Successful Dental Practice

Earl Nightingale once famously said, “Success is the progressive realization of a worthy ideal.” Notice that this mentions nothing about money. Success can be defined many ways. It depends upon what your “worthy ideal” ends up being. If it’s money, be specific as to the amount and the deadline you set for yourself. If it’s something else, like people helped, then also be specific about the number of people and what defines “being helped.” This could include teeth cleaned, cavities filled and more. How you define success is entirely up to you.

 

Once you have a practice, growing your dental business will depend on three key factors.

  • What you have the greatest capacity to do. This would be your top skills which you use with great efficiency.

  • What you make the most money doing. This would be your greatest areas of profit.

  • What you love doing that you’re good at. This would be the thing that gets you out of bed in the morning and keeps life interesting for you.

 

Write down a list of everything that fits each of these three factors. This is your starting point against which you measure all of the tips below.

 

  1. Perhaps the most important single thing you can do toward having a successful dental practice, after getting a good education, is acquiring a wise and knowledgeable mentor or two. Mentors can give you answers to some of your most annoying problems. They’ve been there and likely have already found the best possible solutions.

  2. Any field is always changing and dentistry is no exception. You need to continue with your education. You need to stay up with the latest techniques, technology and wisdom the field as a whole has to offer. This will ensure that you stay competitive on at least on the practice and procedures side of things. But to take full advantage, you must educate yourself beyond the field of dentistry. Consider taking courses in business. You might even want to get a Masters in Business Administration from your local college or university. When you’re done with that, consider learning more about marketing. The more you know, the easier it all becomes.

  3. Reach out to your community. Educate parents about how they can ease their children into good dental hygiene and care. Offer Welcome Kits that train parents what to do and say before their one-year-old has their first visit. Consider talking at local schools and make such outreach memorable in a way that paints your practice in a positive light.

  4. Have the most flexible financing options. Allow your patients to pay by credit card, debit, check and cash. Let them make payments. Put their dental health ahead of your own financial needs. This might hit a few bumps along the way, but most patients will remember you in a favorable light, and this could help build customer loyalty. Also, survey your neighborhood and see what kind of insurance most of your potential customers have. The more insurance carriers you can handle, the more convenient you will seem to your customers.

  5. Referrals are an awesome way to build your business. Obviously, everyone has their own life to live and building your business is not one of their priorities. So, every visit should include handing out a referral card. Most might get tossed. But occasionally, that one action will generate several hundred dollars worth of new business. When you send out mailings, include a referral card or two. Also, have a website built so people can find out more about your dental practice. A web presence makes it easier for others to make referrals.

 

References:

Luginbill, John. (ND). “Six Steps To Grow Your Practice Quickly.” Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from http://dentistryiq.com/articles/2011/12/six-steps-to-grow-your-practice-quickly.html

 

Nightingale, Earl. (1956). “The Strangest Secret.” Columbia Records, New York, NY.

 

PatientNews.com. (ND). “8 Tips for Running a Successful Dental Practice.” Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from http://patientnews.com/article/8-tips-running-successful-dental-practice



 

How to Find a Valuable Dental Mentor

A mentor can help your career in dentistry. Finding the right one is not an easy thing to define. Like finding the right life mate, finding the right mentor depends upon your own interests and needs. The following will give you some pointers to keep in mind during your search.

 

How a Dental Mentor Can Help

 

If you’re still in dental school, you may need to know which specialty to pursue. You may want to know what are the day-to-day concerns of each possible career path. Your dental mentor can give you advice about difficult problems in your practice or in your procedures. They are a resource of information about every aspect of dental practice.

 

A good mentor will let you tag along as they do procedures in their office, or while they talk to dental suppliers. Their years of experience can help you avoid many of the pitfalls.

 

Besides helping you explore career possibilities, they can help you network with other colleagues. They can share their own expertise and give you their unique perspective on common problems in the world of dentistry.

 

To make the most of the mentoring process, you, as the protégé, need to keep an open mind willing to explore new ideas. You need to have a commitment to your own future and to be an active participant in mentoring.

 

What to Look for in a Dental Mentor

 

First of all, you have to get along with your mentor. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you should always feel comfortable with the mentor. Sometimes a really good mentor will challenge your thinking, but they’ll do it in a way that makes you feel safe to respond and to grow in your own knowledge and certainty. A good mentor will never belittle you, but will always encourage you. And it’s quite okay to have more than one mentor.

 

A mentor needs to be a trusted friend, full of wisdom. They are also someone who cares about other people and not merely their own customers. They listen well. They want to see their charge (you) succeed to the fullest extent of your ability.

 

Where to Look for a Dental Mentor

 

Where do you find a mentor? First, consider talking to the successful dentists in your area. Let them know your own interests in dentistry and that you are looking for a mentor.

 

If you already have your own practice, talk to other dentists at the conferences you attend. If possible, talk to the speakers at those events. During your own continuing education, chat with the older students and even the instructors. If they’re too busy to take on new protégés, ask for the names of possible mentors.

 

How to Participate in Mentoring

 

Always communicate freely with your mentor. Don’t hold anything back. Your openness and honesty will only help the mentor see where you need the most help. By all means, make sure you honor any and all commitments you make. A mentor’s time is valuable and they want to know that it’s being used wisely by helping you. Let your mentor know what you expect from the relationship and what you can offer to them in return. Your mentor won’t know how they’re doing unless you tell them; give them feedback so they can be a better mentor.

 

As you gain in knowledge and certainty, consider becoming a mentor to others. You may be surprised how much you can learn by helping others.



References:

American Student Dental Association. (ND). “Mentorship in Dental School.” Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from http://asdanet.org/mentorship/

 

University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry. (ND). “Mentoring Program.” Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from https://dentistry.uic.edu/sites/default/files/IMCE/academics-training/COD-StudentServices-Mentor-Program.pdf

How to Deal with Kids, and Keep Them Coming Back

Not only do children make up a large percentage of the patients coming to dentists, they are also your future customers as adults.

 

Easing a child into dental care can be rather painless (please forgive the pun). The first steps need to be done by the parents. Not all parents know this, but they can help prepare their children for their first visits. As a dentist, when you know you will be having a new patient from that tender age group, give the parents a Welcome Kit. Your kit should include,

  • How the parent should talk about the dentist—meeting a “new friend.” How you will be counting teeth and cleaning them with a special toothbrush. Also, include words that they are to avoid like “painful,” “hurt” or “shot.”

  • How the parents can play act going to the dentist to acclimate the child before they come to the office. Such a pretend visit can help remove any anxieties.

  • Encourage parents to bring their children as early as age 1 so they will be used to the visits as they get older. Starting young makes dental care seem more of an important part of their life. Regular visits helps to make the child’s life more predictable and less a source of anxiety.

  • Caution the parents not to make promises they can’t keep. Saying that everything will be fine could create trust issues for future visits.

  • Tell the parents to keep their discussion simple. Say too much and the child will ask more and more questions the answers to which could make the child fearful. In fact, you might merely have the parents tell their child that a new friend is going to check their smile and count their teeth.

  • Warn the parents not to talk about their own unpleasant dental experiences.

  • Parents might help make the visit seem more lighthearted by telling the child that the dentist will be looking for “sugar bugs” and cleaning them off their teeth.

 

Helping the Child in the Office

 

In the mind of a child, when things are predictable, they are more tolerable. Tell the child what to expect from the visit. Tell them what noises they will hear and what sensations they will experience. Describe any tastes or vibrations. Eliminate all possible surprises. Show them the tools you will use and describe what they’re for.

 

Relaxation is another tool you can use to set the child’s mind at greater ease. Have the child blow soap bubbles through the circular wand used by kids during the summer months. This will help the child control their breathing. You might also have the child tense and relax muscles starting with the toes on one foot and progressing up the body on one side and then the other. This helps them feel more in control.

 

Distracting the child can also prove helpful. If they play with a toy in the waiting area, consider allowing them to hold the toy during the procedure. You might also have the child count ceiling tiles. Or you can talk to them about something pleasant. Consulting with the parents may provide useful information about the child’s specific interests.

 

Reinforcing the child’s good behavior is another important approach. This works best when you consult with the parents, first. Every child is different. Tell the child what you expect from them and tell them that they will be rewarded for being brave. You might even have a generic “treasure chest” in which most children will be able to find something of interest.

 

Getting a parent involved can also help the child relax. Having them sit nearby can give the young patient much needed reassurance. Sometimes, the parent can act as a role model for their little one. If possible, doing a mock procedure on the parent, first, may give the child the confidence they need to go through the procedure.



References:

AlSarheed, Maha. (4/2011). "Children’s Perception of Their Dentists." Retrieved on 2/18/2017 from https://ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3075993/

 

dentalfear.com (ND). "Dental Fear in Children: An interview with Dr. Fred Margolis." Retrieved on 2/18/2017 from http://dentalfear.com/margolis.asp

 

Efron, Dr., and Sherman, Dr. (6/1/2005). "Five Tips for Managing Pediatric Dental Anxiety." Retrieved on 2/18/2017 from http://dentistrytoday.com/pediatric-dentistry/1576

 

Port, Dina. (ND). "8 Tips to Help Kids Overcome Fear of Dentists." Retrieved on 2/18/2017 from http://parents.com/health/dental/kids-overcome-fear-dentists/

7 Easy Exercise Tips for Dentists

The most important piece of equipment you have in your practice is your own body. You can’t afford to have it break down. And exercise does more than merely make you look good and feel good. It also helps to keep you from becoming sick. "Exercise is the best preventive drug we have, and everybody needs to take that medicine,” says sports-medicine physician, Jordan Metzl. He works at New York’s Hospital for Special Surgery, and he’s also the author of The Exercise Cure (Mercola).

 

But when can you find time to exercise? A better question might be, What can I do to ensure that I take the time to exercise? One thing you might do to kick your new habit into reality is to have your office assistant remind you regularly. Not all exercise requires sweating and a shower. Some simple movements and stretches can do a lot to ensure your body stays in good shape. Never do more than you’re comfortable doing. This should be obvious, but you would be surprised by the number of people who overdo their first day returning to exercise.

 

Look at it this way: When you need to go to the restroom, you take a break from what you’re doing and take care of that urgent need. If you’re thirsty, you take a sip of water or juice. Drinks like coffee or tea burn up essential vitamins, like vitamin B, so you want to take those in moderation. So, here are the tips:

 

  1. Keep your body hydrated. Drink lots of water or juice throughout the day. Sure, this will mean that you have more visits to the restroom, but that’s merely your body getting rid of the bad stuff. Think of it as exercise for your health.

  2. Keep a small exercise mat in your office. This should be a little larger than your body. At the very least, you can use this to help you relax between customers. Put one end of the mat against a wall in your office. Lie on your back with your legs extended up the wall and your buttocks against the baseboard. Breathe deeply for five minutes. Stress is a real killer. This helps take stress out of the equation.

  3. Keep a volleyball or basketball in your office. With your head at one end of your mat and an open space beyond the other end, place the ball under your tailbone and roll forward so that the ball massages your back along the spine all the way up to your shoulders. Make sure the ball is not too hard or over-inflated. It should be pliant but not too soft. When you’ve gained some skill in doing this, try to roll the ball along first one side of the spine and then the other side. Also, roll from side to side with the ball in the small of your back.

  4. Lying with your back on the mat, move your legs together and lift them off the floor by 2 to 3 inches. Hold for 5 seconds, then slowly separate your legs as far as you can, keeping your heels 2 to 3 inches off the floor. Hold for 5 seconds. Then move your legs back together, hold for 5 seconds, and then lower them to the mat. This is one of the best exercises for the lower back, because it strengthens the abdominal muscles. All too frequently, the back muscles have to do extra work because of weak abdominals.

  5. Keep 1 or 2 soft, rubber balls in your office each about the size of a tennis ball. Hold a ball in your hand and squeeze. Hold for a second and release. Repeat about ten times. This will help to keep your fingers limber. It will also strengthen your forearm muscles.

  6. On your mat, do a number of pushups. The number you do will depend on what shape you’re in. If you haven’t done pushups in decades. Start with one. If you can’t do a full pushup, with toes and hands touching the mat, start with your knees touching the mat. Don’t do too many. The objective is to stretch the body a little each day.

  7. On your mat, do a number of situps. Do one and only add more if your body is comfortable with it.

 

Bonus tip: Any movement is better than no movement. Dr. Joseph Mercola tells us that sometimes non-exercise movement can be more important than exercising. People sit too much and merely getting up from your desk or stepping away from your work can help to keep the body flexible.

 

As with all exercise, start out being gentle. Do a little less than you’re comfortable doing, especially when you’re just starting out.



References:

Mercola, Joseph. (1/10/2014). "Doctors Prescribe Exercise as 'Best Preventive Drug'." Retrieved 2/18/2017 from http://fitness.mercola.com/sites/fitness/archive/2014/01/10/exercise-preventive-drug.aspx

 

Spiker, Ted. (ND). "Doctor Knows Best: 15 Health Tips from Top Doctors." Retrieved on 2/18/2017 from http://fitnessmagazine.com/health/doctors-tips-to-stay-healthy/

What You Never Knew About Our Presidents and their Dentists

George Washington

 

A popular myth tells us that George Washington had dentures made of wood.

Sorry, it’s not true. But it is true that America’s first president suffered from teeth problems throughout his adult life. When he was inaugurated as America’s first president in 1789, Dr. John Greenwood had been able to save one of the former general’s teeth from extraction. That’s right. Our first president was sworn into office with only one tooth in his mouth. Dr. Greenwood finally had to pull the last tooth in 1796.

 

Washington had several sets of dentures. Though none of them were wooden, one was made of hippopotamus ivory, another of human teeth. Others used bone, gold wire, copper screws and even lead.

 

It seems that Washington may have used his dental problems to help win the Revolutionary War. In 1781, A French dentist, named Jean-Pierre Le Mayeur, grew disgusted with the way the British officers were talking about the alliance between America and the French. He fled British controlled New York and made his way into the American camp. Once the Americans had confirmed the dentist’s sincerity, General Washington contacted the doctor to use his services.

 

Though Washington was a very private person, later he sent a letter to his dentist requesting dental cleaning tools for his own oral hygiene. In that letter, he mentioned casually that he would not be able to make it to Philadelphia any time soon. Thus, he requested that equipment should be sent by mail to him just outside New York.

 

The packet containing the dental letter was intercepted by the British and sent to the area commander, Sir Henry Clinton—Le Mayeur’s former patient. Clinton was convinced that Washington would not be taking his forces south to Yorktown, so he did not do anything to reinforce Lord Cornwallis and his forces there. The ruse worked and Washington’s forces easily defeated British forces at Yorktown, October 19, 1781, all because of a letter to Washington’s dentist.

 

Abraham Lincoln

 

In September 1841, Lincoln had a tooth extracted. The dentist wrestled that tooth with such force that it broke Lincoln’s jaw. And that was without anesthesia! Afterward, it was said that Lincoln was afraid of dentists. Who wouldn’t be after such a painful experience?

 

But in 1862, President Lincoln developed such a toothache that he sought the services of a nearby dentist named Dr. G. S. Wolf. At Wolf’s office near the White House, as the dentist was about to extract the tooth, Lincoln asked him to wait a moment. Then, the president pulled a bottle of chloroform from his coat, opened it, took a deep whiff, and then motioned groggily for the dentist to proceed.

 

Dwight D. Eisenhower

 

Former general of Allied forces during World War II, Ike Eisenhower was America’s president throughout most of the 50s. While visiting Palm Springs, California, February 20, 1954, President Eisenhower lost the cap on one of his front teeth while eating a chicken wing.

 

Because he was a five-star general during the war, and then president of the United States, his dental records tell of many problems with the cap on that tooth.

 

He received emergency treatment for the lost cap, spending the better part of his Saturday night at the dentist. This unusual trip led to many false reports and rumors concerning the president’s disappearance from public view. One Associate Press report stated that the president had died of a heart attack. Later, when the dentist who performed the repair died without leaving a record of the visit, some imaginative people declared that the dental visit was merely a cover story. According to them, President Eisenhower had visited Edwards Air Force Base to talk to aliens from another world.

 

References:

Anderson, Jon. (12/6/1992). “Smile, Mr. President: A Dental Detective Reveals Why Some Have Resisted.” Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1992-12-06/features/9204210345_1_dental-care-dentist-dental-problems

 

DentalCosmeticSpa.com. (7/12/2015). “Everyone Has Dental Problems: X Presidents Who Had Dental Problems.” Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from http://dentalcosmeticspa.com/dental-information/everyone-has-dental-problems-x-presidents-who-had-dental-problems/

 

EndodonticsJournal.com. (5/21/2008). “Dental history of U.S. presidents.” Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from http://endodonticsjournal.com/blogs/7/Dental-history-of-US-presidents.html%3E

 

HealthyMouth.org. (ND). “Presi-dental Health: 4 Strange (But True) Tales.” Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from http://mouthhealthy.org/en/presidential-facts

 

Kelly, Kate. (ND). “George Washington’s Teeth: A President in Pain.” Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from http://americacomesalive.com/2010/10/20/a-president-in-pain/

 

MountVernon.org. (ND). “The Trouble with Teeth.” Retrieved on 2/19/2017 from http://mountvernon.org/george-washington/the-man-the-myth/the-trouble-with-teeth/

5 Fast Ways to Improve Your Office

 

A dental office needs to have both a customer satisfaction guarantee and great resale value. What cements these two together is, first and foremost, the dentist’s happiness - your happiness with the work you do. You should be able to come to your office every day with enthusiasm and the drive to deliver great results. Here are 5 fast ways to improve your office and get you going each day.

1.       Add a little touch of nature

A lot of people underestimate what a plant can do for a room. Simply adding a tiny piece of nature to your office can add a lot of warmth and give a welcoming feel to your workplace. One of the favorite pieces in offices is the cactus. Not only does it make your office look pleasing, it also offers health benefits. Your office emits radiation from all your electrical equipment, and a cactus can soak it all up, reducing the amount that you and your patients are exposed to and making the office safer!

2.       Stay up-to-date

You must embrace the technology of digital communication. The use of services like Lighthouse 360 or Smile Reminders will make reminders for patients’ appointments much easier through emails and text messages. People always check their smartphones and tend to neglect home voicemails. These services will help manage no-show appointments because patients will receive reminders up to an hour before their scheduled appointment. Your office will know if a patient will be coming in or if there will be extra time for the patient currently sitting in the chair.

When you purchase dental software, review everything. Read reviews online or ask your friends if they have used such products or services. The last thing you need is to sign a one-sided licensing agreement. It may be scary to think that the software might go wrong or produce more errors than results, but the key is to familiarize yourself with the software before diving in. There is software available that offers free trials; make sure to take advantage of free trials to gauge how useful that software is.

3.       Color Coordinate

It’s safe to include your favorite color in the office. Some people avoid doing this to keep everything professional-looking. However, making use of your favorite color doesn’t have to look like an unorganized splash of colors. You can start small, perhaps with your stationery – a pair of scissors, a stapler, and other small essential items in your color would be great. Then move on to other things, such as your filing system; archive boxes do not have to look ugly at all. You can spruce things up with complementary colors that will suit your office just fine. You can even add some family photographs for your desk, but make sure not to overdo it.

If you’re unsure on how to go about redecorating your office, there are interior decorators who can help you improve your office. The good news is that a lot of them offer free consultations. They will help your office look modern while incorporating your favorite colors.

4.       Clean up

This may seem like a basic thing to do, but it can do wonders for your office. Decluttering your desk and office means your brain gets decluttered too. It’s refreshing to see organized office space. Do you remember your first day in your office? Try to visualize that as motivation to keep everything neat. Make sure to have enough trash bins that are visible and accessible even to your patients. This will lessen the amount of trash to collect at the end of the day.

5.       Get a top-tier office chair

No great office is complete without an amazing, comfortable chair. You will be using your chair for several hours each day. Find the right fabric and color to complement your office. Consider well-padded chairs for the ultimate experience. Ask yourself questions like how long you will be sitting in it, how does it feel rubbing against your legs, will it hurt to sit for longer periods, etc. Make sure your back is also well supported with the chair you choose. You can look into adding back supports for extra comfort.

The main goal with every office is to make it as comfortable as possible. Need a pillow? Go ahead. Dentistry is a serious profession but it doesn’t have to be boring. If you are considering transitioning out of your dental practice in a few years, improving the look and feel of your office will help to add more value. If you do it properly, you can sell your dental practice in a short amount of time.

No matter what people may have told you in the past, you do not have to settle for an uncomfortable, bland office. There are several things you can do to make your office more welcoming and a fun place to go to work!

 

Legal Protection for Dentists

In our country of litigation-happy citizens, it seems that any of us is just one mistake from a lawsuit. Dentists performing exact, highly skilled procedures and services need to be vigilant in assessing risk and in ensuring that they are doing all they can to minimize those risks in their practice. This article will look at some of the ways that a dentist can protect him- or herself from liability and potential litigation in the form of a medical malpractice complaint.

Negligence

First, a dentist must understand the theory of negligence which is the basis for a medical malpractice claim. Negligence is the failure to act, or the breach of a duty owed to a patient which directly caused injury. The dentist owes a legal duty to the patient under these circumstances, and the dentist breached that legal duty by acting or failing to act in a certain way where those actions or inaction caused the plaintiff's injury and resulted in the patient’s injury or damages.

With that duty in mind, the American Dental Association has a document entitled, Principles of Ethics and Code of Professional Conduct. Members of the ADA voluntarily agree to abide by the ADA Code as a condition of membership in the Association. This code gives the level of acceptable conduct for a dentist and is frequently used when measuring the duty of the dentist and the appropriate standard of care for patients.

Types of Claims

Extraction is one of the top procedures which may result in a greater incidence of legal claims. This is followed by endodontic procedures, dental implants, and crowns and bridges. A dentist will undoubtedly strive to treat all patients with the utmost care, but it is important to note that these procedures can be frequent causes of malpractice claims.

Referrals

Understanding what is part of the dentist’s practice and what should be referred to a specialist can be critical in avoiding malpractice claims. Those dentists practicing general dentistry must know that there are higher risks for negligence claims when they attempt a procedure in which they are not adequately trained or which they have not performed in the past.

For example, with extractions, there are some general dentists who are extremely capable and comfortable performing this procedure. Many of these dentists have undergone additional surgical training or have extensive extraction experience. A dentist who attempts an extraction but underestimates the difficulty, which results in a complication, should inform the patient and refer him or her to an oral surgeon. This may result in additional dental costs and treatment for the patient, and the dentist should be prepared to accept responsibility his or her actions. Document the procedure immediately and follow up with the patient to be certain that they are referred and receive the appropriate case from a specialist.

Malpractice Insurance

Of course, a dental practitioner is required to have malpractice insurance as a prerequisite to practicing. To purchase a policy, a dentist must have a valid license to practice dentistry in that state and a completed application. Most carriers offer two types of malpractice insurance. A new dentist may be offered a first-year claims policy. This can cover the dentist for any claims of a set dollar range, such as from $1 million to $3 million. If a new dentist purchases a claims policy, he or she will be required to also purchase a tail policy. This policy will cover any claims that are pursued after the dentist retires for incidents that happened during practicing. The second type of malpractice insurance is an occurrence policy which covers claims made during practice and after retirement.

Another type of insurance that must be carried is facility insurance for dentists who own their dental offices. Similar to a homeowners’ policy, this will cover injuries sustained from equipment and other incidents that happen on the office premises. As a business owner, a dentist or dental group will have a duty to patients to maintain the property, such as keeping the sidewalks clear of snow or providing railings on steps.

Informed Consent

A factor in any procedure is informed consent. Based on the notion of patient autonomy, the patient has the right to make decisions about their health and treatment. Informed consent is voluntary, but in many cases, in addition to injury, there is a lack of proper informed consent. This gives the patient the risks associated with the procedure so that they have a clear understanding of possible outcomes. Also note that an undesirable result doesn’t mean there is liability. A plaintiff must prove all four elements of negligence to succeed on a claim.

Training

As a professional, it is important to receive regular training and to provide up-to-date training for staff members.

Professionalism

In one survey, a breakdown of communication was found to be a major component in many malpractice claims. For example, the research cites that in a majority of crown and bridge suits, patients remarked that they would not have sued if they had received a refund of their money. In addition, these patients felt ignored by the receptionist and staff.

With all of the news of malpractice lawsuits, many dentists may feel that they are best served by remaining silent and not admitting a mistake. True, in court an admission to the fact that there was an error or a breach in the duty of care would be detrimental to a malpractice defense. However, in the moment, honesty might go a long way to resolving the problem. This doesn’t mean begging for forgiveness, but rather calmly telling the patient that there appears to be a complication and that you will make sure that everything is resolved. Professionalism should not be scuttled for the sake of a defense, but can be maintained so that you keep control of the situation and continue to care for your patient.

Conclusion

Medical malpractice lawsuits have the reputation of million-dollar jury awards. These verdicts are given considerable news coverage. But in fact, the reason for the attention is that they are extremely rare. Refer back to the four elements of a malpractice claim. The first question that an attorney on either side of case will ask is “What are the damages?” If there’s a complication with an extraction, and the patient must be driven across town to an oral surgeon for a procedure the next day that alleviates the issue, there is very little in the way of damages for that patient. This doesn’t mean the patient shouldn’t have the issue addressed by the dentist—refunding the charges and covering the oral surgeon’s work would make the patient about whole. A few years of free dental exams may help with the rest.

Negligence and malpractice are concerns for every dentist. But applying common sense and professionalism, in addition to maintaining a fully-trained staff, can avoid some of the potential for litigation if something goes wrong in the practice with a patient’s care.

How to Get New Patients Using Search Engine Optimization

One of the most frustrating parts of being a dentist is that you accomplish the hard work of building a phenomenal practice, with the staff and facilities needed to deliver quality dental care to hundreds of local patients, but lack the marketing acumen to attract those patients in sufficient numbers.

Today, I’m going to show you how to get new patients, with the bulk of the process requiring only a few hours of work, which your front desk staff can most likely perform during quieter periods in the office.

1)  Ensure You Have an Attractive Website

In order to attract new patients online, you must first have an attractive online presence that reflects the professionalism, quality of care, and concern for patient comfort that your practice provides.

If you don’t have a website, there are plenty of web specialists who can set you up with one for relatively little money. However, be sure to check their previous work, and speak to their former clients to ensure you’re not wasting your money.

Your website needs to only do a few things to be effective: Provide an idea of what patients can expect if they choose you to be their dentist (as stated above), clear information on your location and the hours you are open, and an easy way to contact you – by phone, contact form and email.

2) Create a List of Keywords

A keyword is a word or phrase that people type into Google when looking for something. That ‘something’ is usually entertainment, such as a YouTube video, or some sort of information, such as an article in the Wall Street Journal. However, they could be looking for a local dentist because they just moved to a new area. That’s the key for marketing your practice online.

For example, the keyword a potential patient might type into Google could be, “Williamsburg, VA dentist”. So, to start getting new patients online, you must first create a list of keywords you anticipate people may type into google when looking for a local dentist. A simple way to accomplish this is to use this free online tool: www.mergewords.com.

First you list all of the towns and counties you serve in the left column. Next, list all of the dental services you provide in the middle column. When you are finished, simply click the button “merge” and your new list of keywords will appear below. Copy that list, and add it to an excel document, and you’re done creating your list of keywords!

3) Create an article for each Keyword

Now that you have a good list of keywords, you must next create content around each of them to post on your website.

You see, simply having these keywords on your website won’t ensure you rank at the top of Google for these keywords. Google wants to give its visitors links that have real, useful content. And it is web pages like that which will be at the top of the search result pages when people type in the keywords you have created.

So, what you need to do is write a 750-to-1,200 word article around each of your keywords. This can be tricky when you first start. However, by the time you (or an able staff member as noted above) have reached your 3rd article, you will have a good understanding of how to create content that will effectively rank at the top of Google for your list of keywords.

For example, if the keyword is, “Bucks County, PA dentist”, you can write an article titled, “How to Select a Bucks County, PA Dentist”. Do you see how I embedded the keyword into the title? Now you can write an entire article about how people in Bucks County should go about selecting a competent dentist in their area.

4) Always Write in the Third Person Tense

This is very important. You want to write the article as a third party advisor, and NOT as a dentist seeking new business. I know this sounds counter-productive; however, you need to understand that Google does not want to rank promotional content at the top of their search engine. And why should they? I mean, who wants to see ads anyway?

Instead, Google wants to provide their users with the most objective information available.

So, act as a third party advisor when writing these articles.

In case you’re wondering if this will prevent new business – the answer is that it won’t. Instead, people will Google the keyword, click your site which is now at the top of Google, and call your phone number. What they won’t do is spend a lot of time reading the actual article.

The reason why is because the vast majority of these web visitors are looking for services when they’re typing their keyword into Google. They want to get the sense that you have some authority and experience, and that’s what an article written from a third person perspective provides. They may even think they’re looking for information about the dentist they have clicked on, but the bottom line is that they’ll be looking into your practice, because you’re the one that ranked at the top of Google!

5) Keeping Up with Keywords

Once you’ve written an article for each of your keywords, next you want to track where they are ranking on Google. You can use www.cuterank.net to accomplish this.

This way you can improve or replace poorly ranking articles with more, or better, content.

Based on your location(s), there could be 10-to-200 people typing your keywords into Google each day. It’s up to you whether or not you are there in the search results when they need your dental care.

 

5 Huge Tax Mistakes Dentists Make

No dental practice makes tax mistakes on purpose. However, between the complexity of the tax code, and depending on how well you utilize the advice of your CPA for after-the-fact tax advice, mistakes can happen, and, even more critically, opportunities are frequently overlooked.

1) Waiting Until It’s Too Late

The top mistake dentists make is just that: Not engaging a tax professional until  it's too late to act. Once the clock strikes midnight on December 31st, the game is over, and there’s very little you can do to impact the amount of last year’s taxes.

So at the very least, if the standard calendar is your practice’s calendar year -- meaning December year end -- spend the month getting a hand on where you are and what you might be able to do between now and the end of the year to do whatever’s possible to show lower profit or to identify a loss, to minimize your taxable income.

2) Not Maximizing Retirement Contributions

The second mistake is not maximizing retirement plan contributions, which is very common – especially amongst recently formed businesses.

There are two aspects: The first is not maximizing contributions within the parameters of the type of retirement plan you already have, but the second is that maybe it’s not the best retirement plan overall for your situation. There are other types of retirement plans beyond 401(k)s, IRAs or SEPs that might give you much greater flexibility on how to make the most effective contribution.

3) Improperly Labeling Employees

A really big mistake, especially within the last few years, is misclassifying employees as independent contractors. Now, of course, you know why businesses do that, they don’t want to withhold payroll taxes and generally minimize the administrative expense of a W-2 employee, but the IRS now has a long and detailed list of criteria that will help you distinguish between an employee and an independent contractor, and the taxing authorities keep a sharp eye on this. In addition to the tax consequences of calling someone a contractor versus an employee, there can be serious liability and penalty problems as well. If you’re classifying someone as an independent contractor, that means you don’t have workers compensation or other insurance that you probably should have on them, and if there is a problem on the work site that could cost you a lot.

Mismanaging your company’s tax status can also cause problems, whether you’re a C-corp, an S-corp, an NLC, a partnership, or a sole proprietor, paying attention to what you should be will help you make sure that you make fewer mistakes, and thus results in the best possible tax outcome.

4) Not Separating Out Your Real-Estate

Another problem that’s very common is owning your real estate inside the company. If you own a business and you own real estate, it’s understandable that you might want to have them all in one place, but that’s not the right way to do it. You should have them in separate entities, your company entity in one place, and your real estate as a separate entity, and then treat yourself just like any other landlord would treat you. It’s got to be at  arm’s length, but there is a good deal of flexibility that can ultimately impact your tax situation favorably. Another issue are improperly structured buy-sell or continuity agreements between the partners. An improperly structured agreement could mean that it's old, the evaluation clause doesn’t work, or there is no funding for it, whether through life insurance or a sinking fund, etc. But it could also be that you’ve got a stock redemption agreement instead of a cross purchase agreement. This can get pretty technical, but the important thing to understand is that there is “more than one way to skin the cat.”

5) Not Accounting for Depreciation

The final tax strategy mistake we’ll touch on is in determining when you’re buying equipment, whether or not you should depreciate it or write it off. Here, the tax code is fairly liberal and it allows you to write-off up to $250,000, as of today’s tax-code, for equipment that you’re buying in a single year. So if you’re in a low tax bracket this year, you’ll probably don’t want to write that expense off immediately, and you’ll probably want to spread that out over its useful life, maybe 7 to 10 years. Conversely, if it’s December, and you have a big hunk in taxable income gains, it might make sense to buy your January equipment right now, in December, and then write that off  on this year’s taxes to minimize your taxable income.

Getting your taxes right is an imperfect science, and you won’t get it right every year. However, paying attention to the issues discussed above and working closely to with your tax professional before the year’s end, will save you a great deal time, trouble, and money in a long run.

 

How to Sell Without Selling

Many dentists hate the word “selling” when it comes to presenting procedure that may help people.

This is probably because they’ve had a bad experience with a salesperson, and I want to be viewed as more professional. That being said, we all have to sell the industry at some point. My approach is just to never sell something a patient doesn’t want or can’t afford. In this article, you’re going to discover how to sell to your patients without selling. I’m going to teach you how to persuade and compel the ideal patient to buy what you have by positioning you and your practice as their trusted advisor;  an advisor that they can count on to help them get exactly what they want with your excellence in the industry

The best practices in the world have a process in place for developing rapport, and educating, but not overwhelming their patients. They have a systematic and compelling process that walks their patient from ignorance into awareness, and all the way through the decision-making process to the close. Smart practices engage their patients by being genuinely interested in finding out exactly what they want and need. Once they’ve determine those wants, they will look to see if their patients are willing to learn about solutions to their problem.

In today’s selling environment, it's crucial to be viewed as a trusted advisor and friend, instead of a needy salesperson. Successful practices know where to begin a sale, what the objections are at every stage of the process, and the best possible answers to each of those objections.

So, let’s get started.

1) The Sale Begins in Your Waiting Room

From the second your patient schedules their first appointment to the time you’re treating them in your chair, your patient is either developing trust, or not.

If your front-desk people are friendly, if your tools all seem clean and sterilized, if your “chairside” manner is friendly and courteous, and if your practice seems neat, orderly and efficient, the majority of your work in the selling procedure is done.

First, and lasting, impressions, aren’t just important, they are the very life-blood of your ability to sell specialized procedures.

2) Confidence is Key

 

Unfortunately, many people still believe that confidence is a mark of intelligence, success. and competence. While some of the greatest thinkers that have ever lived may not have been so confident, that doesn’t seem to matter to many people. That is why you need to ensure you present yourself as a confident professional who can completely tackle any given procedure within your realm of expertise.

Here are some ideas to assist you in ensuring you maximize your patients’ trust in you by a show of total confidence and control:

1.      Practice talking about your procedures in a mirror. Now you’ll be able to see exactly what the patient is seeing. Do you have a nervous twitch? Do you stutter when mentioning price? Do you have a difficult time with eye contact? You always want to ensure you speak confidently, and empathetically, while delivering your words like an advocate, and not a salesperson.

2.      Ask for feedback from patients. Ask them what their impressions of you are? What is their confidence in your abilities on a scale of 1-10, and why? You can encourage them to be honest by emailing your patients a private survey they can complete online. Now you’ll be armed with all of the information you need to eliminate that could be costing you money, while increasing what your patients already like about you.

3) Listen to Your Patient

You must realize that several of your patients right now would be interested in having a procedure done in the interest of their dental needs.

While you can easily spot, and detect procedures that may need to be performed based on an x-ray or your analysis, there are other pockets of opportunity that start in your patients’ mind, and not in their mouth. All too often dentists fail to have in-depth conversations with their patients about what they like or don’t like about their smile. This is why you need to get into the habit of asking your patients open-ended questions about their teeth.

For example, a lot of patients feel their front two teeth are “too big.” Now, to you and I they may appear totally normal, but that’s not the point, is it? Even a small deviation from what may be considered “normal” may bug a patient on a daily basis, and if you can fix that problem, you easily sold a procedure just by satisfying a pre existing demand.

4) Sell Based on Need

 

If you do deem that a patient requires a procedure, ensure to lay out all the evidence and make a compelling case, in a friendly and conversational manner. In your patient’s mind, having or not having a procedure performed may boil down to cost, and need. If you can do a good job of showing the value of a procedure and how important it is to your patient’s dental health, then they will be more willing to endure the potential physical and financial pain associated with it.

Remember, people don’t really buy products or services, they buy value. Because of this, you need to preach the value of how a particular procedure will improve your patient’s life, based on what you know about them.

For example:

1.      I know you’re trying to make the best possible impression at work, and this procedure will help you accomplish that goal.

2.      If you really want to ensure you’re doing everything possible to improve the health of your teeth, this procedure is critical for achieving that goal.

3.      The last thing you want on your next vacation is unexpected pain, so if we take these wisdom teeth out now, there is no chance they will be able to bother you then. If we wait, your face could be puffy and bruised on your wedding day!

The bottom line is that you need to build likeability and trust with your office and staff, increase your patients’ faith in you with confidence and expertise, and easily sell your procedures by identifying need, and preaching value.

 

5 Essential Tips for Dentists Looking to Get a New Office

Looking to get a new office for your dental practice?

It’s always wise to speak to dental specific contractors and consultants who can give you valuable advice, as well as examining real estate websites with special search functions for healthcare spaces.

Here are some helpful tips for selecting your next office space:

1. Decide on buying or leasing.

The Wealthy Dentist’s survey shows the following stats:

  • 24% own their building outright

  • 32% own and pay a reasonable mortgage

  • 4% are worried about their mortgages

  • 20% have long-term leases

  • 20% have leases up within the next 2 years

Deciding on buying or leasing can help to  you move in the right direction as you search through real estate listings for a dental office.

 

Leasing leaves you free to pursue better locations when communities change or your staffing needs increase. Buying gives you freedom to build an income from rent. However, there could be a huge cash outflow if renovation is needed. There is also more risk if business slows down.

2. Perform your due diligence.

Ask all the necessary questions involved in getting a new dental office and review all the important information like zoning limitations, ADA compliance, utilities, lease rates in the neighborhood, and background on the dentist/company selling/leasing the space.

Find a dental-specific team of consultants according to your needs:

  • A building contractor

  • A specialized CPA

  • Dental equipment specialist

  • Dental-specific lender

Ask for the following documents from the seller:

  • The balance sheet.

  • The liquidation value of the business once all creditors are paid off.

  • Cash flow statements.

  • Insurance reimbursements.

  • A non-competition agreement to prevent the seller from setting up a new dental practice near you.

  • Rent increase agreements.

  • Option to buy agreements.

  • All the fees: management, maintenance, and the grace period for paying everything.

This information will help you spot negative cash flows, and if there are likely to be more. If so, would you have enough cash reserves and access to liquidity to carry the business through lean times?

3. Always negotiate.

Almost everything is negotiable. The landlord might have no influence regarding price, but he/she may make the deal better, remove detrimental clauses, etc.

4. How’s the location?

This deserves a separate section even though it’s included in due diligence. Low rent/asking price may mean it is a poor location. It’s worth paying extra to make your office as convenient as possible. And of course, ask about competition.

5. Don’t forget goodwill.

Clients become loyal to their dentists. If you happen to be moving into an existing practice, keep the outgoing dentist, or ask him/her to introduce you to his/her clients before leaving.

With smart preparation and patience, these tips will aid you in selecting a location that will grow your practice and improve your lifestyle.

4 Things Every Dentist Should Know Before They Retire

More and more dentists are emerging every year. This is going to be an ongoing trend since the present workforce of dentists are aging closer to retirement. A study by the American Dental Association stated that although 37% of dentists are about to retire, less than 4% are financially stable by 65.

The best solution to combat this statistic: genuinely plan your retirement.

Retirement comes for everyone. The sooner you acknowledge its impending arrival, the better off you’ll be. To help you start planning, here are four things every dentist should know before they retire:

1. Build an exit strategy

Have you thought about selling your practice? If yes, then is it going to be with a one-time payment or a transitional division of payments? Whatever you plan on doing, you need to have an exit strategy long before the retirement comes.

If you are planning on selling your practice, you can’t place the value on it yourself. You may require the services of a dental practice sales consultant to have the correct value to plan for your sale. You may get a huge amount of money from the sale which you can use when you retire, but you may also have to spend a good deal on taxes and broker fees.

If you are going to sell it to an associate on a transitional buy-in, you can direct your money into a retirement plan. This may put off taxes and enable you to have a long-term plan for stuffing your pre-retirement treasure chest. The drawback is that you are going to have to work with another dentist, which some solo practitioners dare not think of.

2. Know how Medicare works

When you turn 65 years old, there is a requirement to apply for Medicare. This government program may present some confusing terms, but it is important that you know about what it covers and requires. Medicare does not cover all medical expenses, so you still have to set a budget every month to use for other medical expenses.

Here is a quick look into the different coverages:

a.       Medicare Part A

-          Free

-          Covers hospital visits

b.       Medicare Part B

-          Pays for medical services e.g. doctor visits

c.       Medicare Part D

-           Prescription drug coverage

Talk with a Medicare representative to get a full grasp on what they cover and what they don’t. This way, you will be able to make educated financial decisions on future costs. The Department of Health and Human Services has a guide for you to learn more about Medicare.

3. Don’t pay for unnecessary insurance

While it is a good thing to be insured at all times, there is a such a thing as having too many insurance premiums. You may have friends or family who call you on a regular basis to sell you things, particularly insurance. It’s no surprise as dentists are among the list of high-income professionals who are targeted by big insurance policies. Consequently, there are people who pay a lot of money for insurance they don’t even need.

Insurance is highly important for you and your family. However, if you’re not able to lessen your insurance costs over the years, you will be spending more than what you need. Don’t blame yourself if you have purchased one of these plans, because there are thousands of salesmen who are just too good at luring people into plans they don’t necessarily need. As a result, numerous dentists are making hasty insurance purchasing decisions without examining them thoroughly enough.

4. Get the help of a financial advisor

How much money do you actually need before you can relax and retire?

What should you do with your money so that you still have an active income?

These are just a couple questions you will have to go examine when you create your retirement plan.

A financial advisor will help you to organize your plan and keep it going with your guidance once you have everything in place. There is no one size fits all plan. Every dentist is going to have a different retirement goal from their peers, and that means that it will require your feedback every step of the way.

With the help of a financial advisor and these tips, you can create a solid plan for your monthly budget, investment options and more, to help you get prepared for your golden years.

 

Top Ten Dentist Jokes You Hopefully Haven’t Heard

Use these jokes to get your patients laughing!

1. When a speaker arrived at the banquet, he seated himself at the head table only to realize that he had forgotten to put in his false teeth.

He was in a state of panic as it just wouldn’t do to have a speaker with no teeth talking about dental hygiene. And besides, most people didn’t understand him very well without his teeth.

He managed to explain the situation to the man seated next to him, and was about to leave for home to get his teeth, when the man smiled and said, “No problem, I just happen to have a spare. Try these on,” and the man passed the speaker a pair of dentures.

The speaker couldn’t believe his luck. He tried on the dentures but they didn’t fit well. “They’re too loose,” he said.

“No worries,” the man said. He reached into another pocket and produced another pair of dentures. “Try these.”

The speaker had no idea why the man would be carrying two sets of dentures with him. He tried on the second pair but they were too tight.

“Okay, I have got one last pair,” the man said. And he produced a third set of dentures from his briefcase.

They were a perfect fit. The rest of the evening went by without a hitch, with the speaker giving a flawless speech and rounding it off with a great dinner.

At the end of the evening, the speaker thanked the man and since they were in the same profession, asked for his name card.

“Oh, you’re mistaken,” said the man. “I’m not a dentist. I’m the local undertaker.”

2. A young dentist had just started his own clinic.

He rented a beautiful office and had it furnished with antiques.

Sitting there, he saw a man come into the front office. Wanting to appear to be the “busy dentist”, the gentleman picked up the phone and started to pretend he had to give an appointment.

Finally, he hung up and asked the visitor, “Can I help you?”

The man said, “Yeah, I’ve come to activate the phone.”

3. A husband and wife entered the dentist’s office.

The husband said, “I want a tooth pulled. I don’t want gas or Novocain because I’m in a terrible hurry. Just pull the tooth as quickly as possible.”

“You’re a brave man,” said the dentist. “Now, show me which tooth it is.”

The husband opened mouth and pointed to a tooth.

“Open wider,” requested the dentist, as he began his examination of the patient.

“Good God!” he said startled. “You’ve got the biggest cavity I’ve ever seen – the biggest cavity I’ve ever seen.”

“OK Doc!” replied the patient. “I’m scared enough without you saying something like that twice.”

“I didn’t!” said the dentist. “That was the echo.”

4. A dentist, after completing work on a patient, came to him begging for a favor.

Dentist: Could you help me out? Could you give me a few of your loudest, most painful screams?

Patient: Why? Doctor, it wasn't at all bad this time.

Dentist: There are so many people in the waiting room right now, and I don't want to miss the four o'clock ball game.

5. Dentist: I have to pull the aching tooth, but don’t worry it will just take five minutes.

Patient: And how much will it cost?

Dentist: It’s $500.

Patient: $500 for just a few minutes’ work??

Dentist: I can extract it very slowly if you like.

6. After cleaning his patient’s teeth, the dentist accompanied the 5-year-old boy to the reception area, only to see him struggle with the oak door.

“It’s heavy, isn’t it?” asked the dentist.

“Yes,” he said. “Is that so children can’t escape?”

7. Yes 4 out of 5 dentists recommend sugar free gum to their patients who chew gum, but we all wonder what the 5th dentist thinks, right?

He says, "Eat all the sugar you want, it keeps me in business!"

8. Dentist: Just let me finish and you will be another man after these cosmetic procedures.

Patient: Okay doc, but don’t forget to send your bill to the other man.

9. While I was waiting to see the dentist, a woman came out of his inner office smiling.

Nodding to me, she said, “Thank goodness my work is complete. I’m so glad to have found a painless dentist and one who’s so gentle and understanding too.”

When seated in the dentist chair, I related the incident to the doctor.

He laughed and explained, “Oh, that was just my mother.”

10. A patient sits in the dental chair with severely fractured front teeth.

After discussing how they will be restored and what the fee would be the patient says, “Before we begin, Doc, I gotta know: Will I be able to play the trumpet when you are finished?”

Dentist: Sure, you will!

Patient: Great, I couldn’t play a note before!

 

6 Friendliness Techniques for Introvert Dentists

The majority of dentists are introverts, which means they are often judgers and thinkers. Introverts get energy from solitude. Judgers like things settled and decided. Thinkers like facts and remain objective and calculating instead of relying on emotions and instincts. A LOT of people in the medical field are introverts. For dentists, nearly 60% are introverts, 65.9% are thinkers, and 75% are judgers.

It can be a struggle for introverts to be cheerful and outgoing all day. But you don’t have to be exhausted. Embrace the benefits of introversion. You’re a keen observer and listener. Use these traits. Don’t force yourself into actions that aren’t natural for you.

For instance, introverts don't like small talk, which some people may equate to snobbishness or a negative personality. In the dentist's office, this stiffness can increase patient anxiety.

Instead, try these techniques.

 

Friendly Techniques for Introverted Dentists

1. Don’t imitate the extroverts in their small talk. You'll only look awkward.

2.  Get comfortable. You don't have to make small talk or force yourself to interact, but you can train yourself to get comfortable. It’s your office. See it as a place you belong in, and you will.

3. Accept and acknowledge the social need. Instead of dreading interactions or particular types of conversations, accept them as necessary parts of being a dentist.

For example:

Goal: A friendly office culture.

Steps to achieve that: Give positive feedback to your staff, and voice concerns immediately. Introverts tend to internalize issues to avoid conflict, but that can build into needless stress.

Action: Share a short anecdote about your weekend. And then listen to their own stories. When managing your staff, don’t be a perfectionist. Humans make mistakes. The key is to learn from them.

Goal: A friendly interaction with a patient.

Steps to achieve that: A simple, "How are you today?" Ask them if they have any questions you can answer. Be the first to speak, so you can proceed to listen. Use your keen observation to comment on a new haircut, a nice pair of boots, a child’s rosy cheeks.

 

By removing the pressure to like social interaction, you can relax and become an amiable participant.

4. Instead of making small talk, listen big. Ask a question, let them talk. You WOULD ask questions to your patients anyway, medical or not. Be pleasantly curious-- which people love.

Be helpful. Ask if you can get them anything, or if you can make them more comfortable somehow.

5. Use your observation skills to create a friendly bond with your patients. You probably noticed their scarf, purse organizer, or haircut-- ask them about it.

6. Recharge. Retreat into your office for alone time, even if it's as little as five minutes between appointments. And designate time every week just for yourself or with someone you love, where you don't have to please anyone.

Being an Introverted Dentist Isn’t Bad

Your success depends on the quality of your work as a dentist, so you don't have to pressure yourself with social skills.

People like you. Patients love that you listen instead of talk over them. They love that you respect the need for space and thinking time. You don't rush patients. You don't chatter. You listen and you answer questions.

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” - Maya Angelou

As long as you make your patients feel welcome and listened to, they’ll like you. Long chats don’t have to be included.