The future looks bright for teeth whitening and other dental ‘tweakment’ procedures. Once believed to be reserved for Hollywood A-listers, teeth whitening is now sought by anyone who wants that perfect instagramable smile. Most importantly, more people now appreciate the treatment as one way to maintain good oral health.
In 2020, the global market value of tooth whitening was about $6.14 billion. The value is also forecasted to reach up to $8.21 billion in 2026.
Dentists should leverage the growing appreciation for teeth whitening to educate patients about other dental treatments that aren’t viewed widely as aesthetics. According to research, 50 to 70% of patients fail to adhere to dentists’ recommendations a month after the visit.
Practicing patient-centered care by initially tapping into people’s appreciation of teeth whitening is one strategy that dentists can develop to improve patient’s adherence. Patient-centered care focuses on delivering excellent oral care while actively involving the patient in the process.
The process takes into account the individual preferences and needs of the patients. Doing so enhances their experience and satisfaction, making it easier for dentists to gain patients’ trust and increase case acceptance.
GLO Science Pro, the company behind a breakthrough teeth whitening technology, helps dental professionals deliver patient-centered care by using teeth whitening as a starting point. We’ll talk about how you can incorporate this strategy into your practice. But first, let’s discuss briefly how GLO teeth whitening works to understand why it’s one of the authorities to heed when it comes to patient-centered care.
GLO’s Revolutionary Tooth Whitening Technology
GLO’s teeth whitening system uses a unique gel formulation and technology to help patients achieve long-lasting results with little to no sensitivity. The gel, placed in an enclosed mouthpiece, is activated by a combination of heat and light. Practicing dentists can complete the teeth whitening procedure in less than an hour.
How To Promote Patient-Centered Care and Position Teeth Whitening Into Your Practice
1. Establish Rapport With the Patient Before the Visit
Communication plays an invaluable role in increasing patient satisfaction. When patients are satisfied, they are more compliant with treatment recommendations.
Maximize the pre-visit communication exchange to build rapport with the patient even before the visit. Here are some ways to exemplify patient-centered care even before the appointment:
- Allow online appointment scheduling.
- When responding to the patients, address them using their names.
- Adjust your communication style to deliver a personalized experience. Use the patient’s intake and CDC’s pre-screening form to gain valuable insights into the patient’s motivation and treatment goals.
- Develop a framework or guidelines for patient communication with help from your most people-oriented staff. Doing so will help you avoid sounding scripted and
- Use as many caring words as possible when conversing with the client.
- Add a section on the patient intake to communicate areas of concern, such as anxiety about the dental office or procedures.
- If the patient mentions areas of concern, probe further. Work out ways to address fears and give assurance to the patient. If needed, set a longer appointment schedule to allow the patient to acclimatize to the dental environment and facilitate patient education.
- Send a friendly reminder for the patient about their appointment.
Once you have established a relationship with the patient, it will be easier to engage them about dental treatments, such as GLO teeth whitening, during the hygiene visit.
2. Create a Warm and Welcoming Environment
For some patients, the idea of going to a dental office alone induces anxiety. About 70% of patients deal with some level of dental anxiety. The high percentage can be attributed to the unpleasant sensations that most patients experience during treatment or by simply being in a dental office.
The sound of drilling a tooth, the appearance of some dental equipment, the smell of disinfectants or dental treatment products—all these can impact the patient’s senses and trigger anxiety. Add to all that the concerns brought by the pandemic, and you’ll have a patient who is less likely to show up for routine dental hygiene procedures, let alone sign up for teeth whitening.
Making your dental office as welcoming as possible will help minimize the sensory discomfort that patients experience. You don’t have to do something drastic to achieve this. Simple enhancements, such as the use of essential oils to make your practice smell like a spa, can do wonders for your patients’ senses.
Empower Your Dental Team, Too
Creating a welcoming environment is not limited to the physical dental office. From the front-desk staff to dentists, your entire dental team plays a significant role in making patients feel comfortable.
After more than a year of social distancing, patients are hungry for person-to-person comfort. Make the most out of the interaction to connect to the patient on a personal level. If needed, extend the schedule to ensure excellent patient-centered care. But for many dentists, soft skills remain a challenging arena. Improve the situation by investing in training for building rapport and other people skills.
Organizations like Benco Dental hold webinars and other initiatives that equip dentists in other areas aside from clinical expertise. Use the pandemic-induced downtimes to work on becoming a practice that champions patient-centered care.
3. Elevate Patient Education
We already know that teeth whitening is an excellent motivator for patients. But we shouldn’t stop there. Its relevance today should just be a jump-off point toward educating the patient on the importance of achieving complete oral health.
Equipping patients with information will further increase their confidence in the procedure’s benefits and compliance to at-home care. One effective way to get the patient on board with treatment is through visual aids and other materials.
GLO Teeth Whitening provides patient-ready videos that dental practices can use for marketing the procedure and explaining its benefits to patients effortlessly. These materials on your patient lounge or waiting area is also an effective strategy to spark further interest in teeth whitening. You may also include a page on your website that answers frequently asked questions, like “Is teeth whitening safe?”
Another effective tool for educating patients about teeth whitening is GLO Science’s Motivational Shade Assessment Kit. This system allows you to incorporate GLO Teeth Whitening into your practice and help the patient find their perfect shade of white. The kit comes with the following:
- Whitening Shade Guide
- Paper patient shade guides
- A brochure that includes instructions and links for motivational shade assessment training
How To Position GLO Teeth Whitening Using the Motivational Shade Assessment Guide
Do the following for every hygiene patient to transform them into aesthetic patients or vice versa:
- Let the patient know that you will be taking a shade of their smile on every hygiene visit after welcoming them into the dental chair.
- Make sure to arrange the shade guide from lightest to darker shades.
- Using a mirror, show your patient their teeth’s current shade of white in the shade guide.
- Record the patient’s starting shade.
- Ask the patient to choose the shade of white they want to achieve.
- Introduce the patient to GLO Science Dual Whitening technology that’s available in your practice. Highlight how fast, safe, and compelling the procedure is and explain why it’s the best option compared to over-the-counter teeth whitening products.
4. Maintain Communication After the Procedure
Patient-centered care is a continuous process. If you want to build a thriving dental practice, you have to ensure that your relationships with your patients don’t end once they set foot outside the dental office. With the abundance of communication platforms today, this should not be an impossible feat.
As simple as sending an e-mail or social media message about your latest promos can go a long way. Doing so will make your patients feel that you care about them so much that you don’t want them to miss out on saving while getting excellent care.
Another way to promote patient-centered care is to get patient feedback proactively. This practice does not only make your patients feel heard. It speaks volumes about how you wanted to improve your services and deliver an excellent experience.
It’s Your Time to Shine!
Apply the tips mentioned above on every case to make your patients smile from within—and watch your practice shine. GLO’s teeth whitening products are available at Benco Dental. Visit our shop’s page to check out our inventory or place an order.