Occasionally, I see a commercial on television that promote ‘centers’ that provide dental implants. They mention how all treatment is available in one location, although that’s something we’ve provided for may years. So, just what is different about these centers?
What concerns me when an adult consults with these facilities is in opposition with where we feel we excel — personalized care. These centers are corporations primarily structured to achieve certain profit margins. While we are also a for-profit business, we do not rely on achieving a certain ‘return-on-investment’ for each individual who walks through our door.
In our office, we rely on developing lasting relationships of trust. Hopefully, each patient we care for decides to remain in our care for a lifetime of smiles. And, we hope, they will send friends and family members who also desire the standard of care we are so committed to.
Personalized care, as we see it, is care that is recommended to each patient based upon his or her unique needs. Let’s say a patient comes to us for dental implants. After a consultation, exam and review of images, let’s say we feel the patient would do fine with a crown-&-bridge based upon his or her budget, location of missing teeth, and personal preferences.
Our desire is to tailor treatment that is appropriate for each individual so they feel ‘cared for’ rather than a commodity. If we were governed by a major corporation who had to report to shareholders each quarter, our focus on the individual would be tainted, in my opinion.
I’ll give you an example of how personalized care is so beneficial. We had a patient come to us complaining of a loose-fitting denture who wanted dental implants. He had been advised to have eight implants placed in order to have a non-removable arch of teeth attached. After examination and review of his records, we presented a much more affordable option.
In his case, we advised four implants using the All-On-Four system that is specifically designed for patients with minimal bone depth. (This bone loss is common after many years of wearing dentures.) Using unique angles, these implants are strategically-placed to easily bear the load of a full arch of teeth. And, they are non-removable.
Because dental implant treatment costs are largely based upon the number of implants placed, this provided a much more affordable option for the patient. And, he still achieved his goals.
Another example has to do with a patient who was missing three teeth in a row. She was told that she’d need an implant to replace each missing tooth. However, that’s not always needed and wasn’t so in her situation. We were able to place one implant that held a bridge of three teeth, restoring the look, feel and stability of the natural teeth she’d lost.
We also look at each patient’s medical and dental history and recommend treatment based upon the medications they take, their age, their overall health and habits, such as smoking or marijuana use, for example. We don’t judge our patients, but rather seek to help them maintain a healthy, confident smile for now and for their lifetime.
Here, patients are respected. Their individual preferences are built into treatment plans. And, we strive to help each achieve a smile that is worry-free. We hope to help patients prevent problems from occurring in the first place, saving them time and money. In doing so, we are rewarded with patients who know they are valued as individuals and not as profit entities.
If you feel you lack a relationship of trust when it comes to your dental care, we invite you to schedule a no-charge consultation appointment. I’ll be happy to discuss your individual needs and goals and make recommendations that can help you achieve a terrific smile you’ll love to share often!