I’m planning for a patient appointment shortly after New Year’s, and part of my preparation is putting together the appropriate checklist. Do you use checklists?

I’m a pilot, and before taking off I complete a thorough checklist of items to be certain that the airplane is functioning correctly and is likely to perform as expected, giving me a comfortable ride to my destination and getting me back on the ground safely.

My checklist for patient care is used in much the same way for the preparation, but it’s also used a little differently during the flight. In the airplane, the only reason I usually refer back to my checklist is in an emergency. I review my dental checklist prior to take-off, but I continue to use it throughout to check my position and stay on course.

Don’t forget to get that shade at the beginning, and are you sure that copyplast seats passively? You’ll notice that it tells me when to take an image. Sometimes it’s just too easy to keep on moving and miss that picture that I’ll wish I had taken. My checklist reminds me of that, and I remember why it’s an important image.

You can’t see the back of this sheet, but I always plan the bites I’ll need to take for a specific case and itemize them on the back of the sheet. In the case I’m planning for in a couple of weeks I need several: one with the upper provisionals against the lower anterior provisionals/posterior prep;, one with the upper provisionals against the lower anterior preps/posterior provisionals; one with the upper anterior provisionals/posterior preps against the lower anterior provisionals/posterior preps; and finally, one with the upper anterior preps/posterior provisionals against the lower anterior preps / posterior provisionals. I’m glad I wrote that down.

Since I started doing the checklists, I can honestly say that I’ve been more prepared, more thorough, and more relaxed than ever while treating patients. I’m confident that whatever happens on the flight, I have thought through and noted the things I must do to have the best shot at a good landing.

You might have noticed that the sheet illustrated says “FB of Provisionals.” That’s because the protocol is different if I take the facebow of the preps. Which should you do? Talk to your technician and decide.

If you would like a copy of this esthetic checklist e-mail me and I’ll send it back to you.

gdewood@speareducation.com

Comments

Commenter's Profile Image Rick Bowen
January 12th, 2012
please email me checklists Thank you Rick Bowen
Commenter's Profile Image Tom Leatherman
January 13th, 2012
Hello Gary! I would like to see your checklist as well Thank you! Tom
Commenter's Profile Image Mark Rotsaert
January 19th, 2012
Hello Gary could you please send me a copy of the check list Thank you Mark!
Commenter's Profile Image Stephen A. Eck, D.D.S.
January 22nd, 2012
Dear Gary. Reviewing an article in DE from July 2011, I was curious about the 85 mm macro lens and the wireless flash that are compatible with the Nikon 7000 digital camera. I have this camera and was interested in the lens--is it necessary to use a Nikon lens, or are there other brands that interface? Additionally, which brand and model number of the wireless flash is illustrated in the article's photo? I take routine patient photos now with a Nikon cool-pix 4500 on a macro setting with it's own dedicated wireless flash, but would like to upgrade to the 7000 camera. Thanks for your help. I'm finding your web site interestinf and varied and will be spending some time checking it out. Sincerely, Steve
Commenter's Profile Image Dr Christian Lafrenière
May 29th, 2012
Is it possible to receive the form you fill when a new patient is calling for a first visit apointment. Thank you !
Commenter's Profile Image Shane Seefeldt
April 1st, 2013
Assignment complete