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When your team answers patient questions, are the responses genuine? Are you empowering patients to take ownership of their own oral health?

In this digital age, where there is limited room for miscommunication, the new Spear Online “Conversation Essentials” series provides your practice team with 1-2 minute vignettes that highlight supportive responses to address a wide range of everyday concerns — giving you simple tools to shape a more positive patient experience.

These easy-to-digest tips are the latest resources available to Spear Online members, with all 60 videos accessible on the “courses” page by selecting the “Conversation Essentials” toggle.

Ideal for morning huddles, the two-minute videos help the entire team incorporate succinct and effective messaging that sets clear patient expectations about treatment.

Not yet a Spear Online member? Gain access to 1,500 online lessons, Patient Education videos and more when you join.

Here are three examples of “Conversation Essentials” videos:

“Why Should I See a Dentist If I’m Not in Pain?”

Instructor: Dr. Steve Ratcliff

The ADA Health Policy Institute’s 2019 “Annual Dentistry Industry Report” indicated that 33% of adults don’t believe they need to visit a dentist.

By providing a concise answer to a patient question, clinicians can better showcase the value of dental treatment and shape a positive experience.

In this “Conversation Essentials” video, Dr. Steve Ratcliff, who has practiced general dentistry for more than 40 years, demonstrates how to have an effective conversation with patients about the benefit of consistent dental appointments.

“People often tell me that they don’t go to the dentist because nothing hurts,” Dr. Ratcliff said. “Sometimes they’ll go many years without having a dental visit.”

“The problem with that is, most dental diseases — decay, gum disease, sometimes tooth abscesses and even oral cancers, are very quiet and cause no pain until they become more severe,” he said.

“How Can I Treat Bleeding Gums?”

Instructor: Dr. Gary DeWood

Nearly half of all adults in the U.S. have some form of periodontal disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

In this “Conversation Essentials” video, Dr. Gary DeWood, explains how to give patients clear guidance on how to alleviate their symptoms.

“One of the first things we would talk about is the things that you would do at home to try and manage the tissue and the inflammation,” said Dr. DeWood, a founding member of Spear with more than 40 years’ experience in clinical practice.

“Things like brushing and flossing are the most straightforward, but we might also recommend some medication either below the gums, or things that you can rinse in your mouth to help to manage and control the inflammation and, we hope, to stop that bleeding,” he said.
 

“My Teeth Are Sensitive When I Drink Something Cold. What Can I Do About It?”

Instructor: Dr. Darin Dichter

In this “Conversation Essentials” video, Dr. Darin Dichter, who brings nearly 20 years’ experience as a general practitioner and prosthodontist to Spear, discusses the reasons that lead nearly one in eight patients to develop sensitivity, emphasizing terms that resonate — like exposure to acids and teeth grinding.

Dr. Dichter also explains why it is necessary to check whether the cold sensitivity is localized to one tooth or affects the whole mouth, giving the patient a clear look into the treatment planning process.