Oral Health Group

Don’t Be Afraid to Keep Learning

May 11, 2020
by Oral Health

When conducting our research for Data Driven Dentistry, we found 72% of patients would choose their own dentist to perform a specialized procedure over a specialist, if their dentist had the applicable skills. It makes sense, as patients would spend less time traveling to additional appointments and have less worry about getting comfortable with a new dentist. This demonstrates how important it is to obtain specialty skills and show them off when you have them.

It is incredibly valuable to obtain specialized skills when completing your education, if you have the chance. While this increases the time before you can begin working by 3-5 years and may add to your school debt, the benefits outweigh the negatives in the end. When you possess more skills, you can perform additional procedures, which will increase the revenue of your practice. While many patients are content with being referred to a specialist, most of them would still prefer their own dentist perform treatment.


If completing a specialty program is not for you, there is another way to increase your skills: continuing education courses. CE courses are offered year-round from many different organizations on a variety of topics. Whether you physically attend or tune in for a webinar, CE is a way to constantly upgrade your knowledge, allowing you to continually showcase new skills.

One of the best places to highlight your specialty skills is obvious: your website. Utilize your website to prove your skills to your potential or current patients. Here are some of the ways you can do this:

  • Include a detailed biography that highlights your training and education, including designations
  • List all the services and procedures you provide
  • Provide links to clinical articles to which you have contributed
  • Showcase any awards your practice may have won

By including these items on your practice’s website, you will show patients that you have all the necessary skills to treat them. By highlighting your talents to perform specialized procedures, patients will know they won’t have to anticipate being referred to other practitioners very often. Time is extremely valuable, and most patients will opt for the least time-consuming option.

Another way to highlight your specialized procedure skills is in person. When describing treatment plans to patients, ensure you are using your communication skills to the best of your ability. Ensure the patient fully understands the treatment and what options are available to them. At this time, you can explain to the patient that you are capable of performing the procedure if they would prefer you perform it over a specialist. If needed, go into detail about the steps of the procedure to prove how familiar it is to you.

As they say: if you’ve got it, flaunt it! If you have skills, don’t be afraid to show them as it will certainly pay off!

As seen in the print issue of Oral Health May 2020

*In late October and early November, 2019, Bramm Research, a third-party independent research consulting firm, conducted an online survey on behalf of Oral Health. Based on a sample of 1,000, the margin of error is +/- 3.2%.

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