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    How to increase case acceptance with preconditioning

    Patient interactions should involve your whole office, from the decorations to the staff.


    The hygienist has more time to build rapport with your new patient. They are able to spot periodontal and restorative problems while cleaning the teeth and are able to point these things out to the patient ahead of time. This is the perfect time to talk the doctor up. Gushing (in a controlled and believable manner) about the high quality and gentle work that Dr. Smith performs can go a long way in making the patient much more receptive to the doctor’s recommendations.

    Using the tip-offs from the cosmetic questionnaire, the hygienist can get a handle on the patient’s concerns. From there, they can convey how absolutely beautiful Dr. Smith’s cosmetic care is and how ecstatic the patients have been after receiving a smile makeover at your office. They shouldn’t get squeamish about using superlatives to describe the doctor’s work. New patients need to know you are the best, and that needs to come from your staff, not you.

    When the hygienist is performing a preliminary exam, they can talk about the possible need for scaling and root planing if there is periodontal disease present. If there is a fractured cusp, they can mention that the doctor may recommend a crown. If there are any missing teeth, the hygienist can touch upon the need for implants or other prosthetics. By priming the patient with these tidbits, they will be more receptive to your recommendations.

    Related article: 4 ways to tweak your case presentation to increase case acceptance

    The same goes for the assistants when they are preparing an emergency patient. While listening to the patient’s concerns, it’s a great time to throw in that they are in experienced hands with the doctor and will receive the best of care. It never hurts to have them send a subliminal message that the doctor always recommends treatment that is in the patient’s best, long term interest and that it is a good idea for them to follow the doctor’s recommendations.

    Before you walk into the operatory, have the staff member fill you in with the patient’s hot buttons. Is this patient interested in improving their smile? Would they like to function better? What are the primary concerns that the patient has about their oral health? This vital information helps tremendously when it comes time to formulate the treatment plan.

    Proper preconditioning by the staff — before you even meet the patient — can lead to more case acceptance. This will greatly shorten your consultation time and help you build a trusting relationship with your patient because they’ll already know that you are the best.


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