Not long ago, my wife called my attention to a “Dear Abby” column that appeared in our local newspaper. The letter-writer complained that his dentist talked politics while working in his mouth, which both upset him, and raised his blood pressure! He questioned Abby how he could get his dentist to stop! Seriously?
Having provided clinical care for some thirty-eight years, I must admit that my patients and I shared many conversations in the operatory, but during treatment, my chairside assistant and I were all business!! Maybe I just wasn’t that good, but, when I had a diamond bur on a handpiece spinning some 250,000 rpm in a patient’s mouth, I couldn’t think of anything else but the task at hand!
In his best-selling book, “Becoming Remarkable,” Futuredontics CEO, Fred Joyal, describes many ways to set one’s practice apart from others. Significantly, he repeatedly emphasizes the need to provide an exceptional experience for each patient you see. Somehow, proclaiming one’s political viewpoint to a captive audience (who can’t respond) just doesn’t sound exceptional to me!
My good friend, Dr. David Moffet, concurs. An incredibly successful speaker, author, and clinician, David’s great book, “How to Build the Dental Practice of Your Dreams,” describes the Ultimate Patient Experience. Nowhere in his fun-to-read text, does he suggest annoying your patients! Amazing!
My father shared much wisdom with me during my brief eighteen years at home. One piece of advice still meaningful to me, was to avoid public conversation regarding sex, religion, or politics! Smart man; smart advice!
Some say “There’s a time and a place for everything.” I’m not sure I agree. One thing I do agree with, however, is that Dear Abby’s letter-writer needs a new dentist!
(The woman pictured with me in the above photo was one of my very first patients and she remained with us for 37 years.)
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