Dentaltown September 2020 - 40

office
visit
On the flip side, many orthodontic patients
who don't have an established dental home
choose to become my patients as well. These
patients are already comfortable with the
staff and the office, so it's natural for them to
want to utilize more of the services we offer.

Parents are sometimes more
challenging than their children. Got
any horror stories?
I can't pinpoint the worst encounter I've
ever had, but I would say that overall, the
worst types of parents "baby" their kids too
much. I've had a mom sit right next to her
10-year-old son during a routine checkup.
She was holding his hand and patting his
leg with her other hand while saying, "Oh,
baby, are you doing OK? Is she hurting you?"
It's so frustrating when parents transfer their
own fears onto their children.

On the flip side: Do you have
a favorite patient story?
A lot of my favorite patient stories tend
to involve special-needs patients. Though
working with this population may be
challenging, it's also so rewarding.
One patient with special needs was known
to be combative. It was my first time seeing

him and I was pregnant at the time, so I
didn't know how things would go. I surely
didn't want to get kicked or punched! He
also only understood Japanese, which made
communication difficult. I slowly approached
him and sat on the bench next to him, trying
to see what he was watching on his phone.
For some reason, he thought I was a celebrity
YouTuber and instantly felt comfortable with
me. The appointment ended with no tears
and multiple selfies. These small victories
make my profession so much fun.

What advancements in dentistry
are you most excited about?
Laser dentistry. I have yet to bite the
bullet and buy one of those fancy lasers, but
I'm starting to focus a lot of my CE in this
direction. It's amazing what lasers can do!
I'm also interested in tethered oral tissues
and sleep/airway issues. Pediatric dentists
should be part of the team evaluating and
treating children for these issues.

You specialize in helping anxious
patients. What's the secret?
I think many general dentists possess the
qualities and traits to work with children.
What has worked for me is to slow down
and find the root of a child's fear. If you can
find out why they're scared, you can teach
them how to overcome that fear. As you
guide them, you are also gaining their trust.
Of course there will be times when no
trick up your sleeve works. Sedation dentistry
is a great adjunct to treat these patients. I offer
both oral conscious sedation and general
anesthesia to my patients. I think what's
critical is to make sure you are properly trained
to provide these services and know how to
handle an emergency if one should arise.

Tell us about your team, your vision
and where you hope to see your
practice in the next 10 years.
I feel like staffing is usually everyone's
top stress, but I've been lucky with my
team! Each person was carefully chosen to
fit into our office culture and represent the

40

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Dentaltown September 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Dentaltown September 2020

Dentaltown September 2020 - Intro
Dentaltown September 2020 - Cover1
Dentaltown September 2020 - Cover2
Dentaltown September 2020 - 1
Dentaltown September 2020 - 2
Dentaltown September 2020 - 3
Dentaltown September 2020 - 4
Dentaltown September 2020 - 5
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