Membership Matters - March 2018 - 22

The second example is with your
patients. Many of us are children of
the Pankey Institute or The Spear
Institute. I came out of that experience
a much more skilled clinician, but not
necessarily a better, more empathetic
listener. For me, because of the great
skill and confidence these clinicians
had, it seemed like they would tell
someone what they need, and they
would just do it. Maybe part of that
was the patients they treated were
unusual in the fact that when they got
to these doctors, they KNEW they had
big problems and KNEW they wanted
to do involved treatment when they
walked in the room.
That did not happen with any
regularity in my office. I offered the
best I knew how to do, but it often
ended with a "not now" or, "I will
have to think about it". It often took
years to complete the full treatment
I suggested.
I have discovered three tools I
didn't have on my tool belt for many

years. The first was listening skills,
the second was interpreting what I
heard and the third was crafting a
value statement.
There are so many things in
patients' lives that affect whether they
will accept treatment. If we listen well,
they will tell us these things. The first
is awareness. Some people come
into our offices having no or little
knowledge of what is going on in their
mouth. If they have no pain or a low
dental IQ, they may be shocked by
what you tell them. At this point, you
have the opportunity to use empathy.
Put yourself in their shoes. The
questions they often ask themselves
are: can I afford this, is it going to hurt,
what in my life do I need to defer to do
this, my daughter is getting married
next month, I have college tuition to
pay next week. These people are
sorting all the events in their life to see
if dentistry fits in right now.
The second consideration is
readiness. Some people just don't

want to do the work. Dentistry is not
a high priority for the same reasons I
gave under awareness. There is other
stuff in their life they want and need
to do that is higher on their "to do" list
than dentistry. You have to listen to
what they are saying and ask the right
questions to get to the bottom of this.
It is okay if people refuse treatment.
It is not an indictment of your skill or
ethics if they do not feel fine dentistry
is important. If you offer the best
you can do, give them alternative
treatment choices, and give them
financial choices, you should feel fine
about what they decide. You have
to hear what they are saying and let
them make the important choices
in their own life. If you are being
empathetic to their needs, by putting
yourself in their shoes, you can realize
they are responsible for their own
choices and you can accept whatever
their choice is. For many of us, that
is the hardest point-to accept what
they decide.

2018 OREGON DENTAL CONFERENCE HIGHLIGHT

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Oregon Dental27/02/18
Association
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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Membership Matters - March 2018

Nicaragua
New Members, Board Meeting Highlights
Events and Education
Molar Movement
Insider Results
ODA Member Benefit of the Month
Compliance Corner
Through the Loupes
The Importance of Emotional Intelligence in Dentistry
Dentists Take Bite Out of Opioid Epidemic
Service to Veterans
Dental Foundation of Oregon
Health Beyond Communities
Index of Advertisers
Classified Ads
Membership Matters - March 2018 - Intro
Membership Matters - March 2018 - cover1
Membership Matters - March 2018 - cover2
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 3
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 4
Membership Matters - March 2018 - Nicaragua
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 6
Membership Matters - March 2018 - New Members, Board Meeting Highlights
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 8
Membership Matters - March 2018 - Events and Education
Membership Matters - March 2018 - Molar Movement
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 11
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 12
Membership Matters - March 2018 - Insider Results
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 14
Membership Matters - March 2018 - ODA Member Benefit of the Month
Membership Matters - March 2018 - Compliance Corner
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 17
Membership Matters - March 2018 - Through the Loupes
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 19
Membership Matters - March 2018 - The Importance of Emotional Intelligence in Dentistry
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 21
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 22
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 23
Membership Matters - March 2018 - Dentists Take Bite Out of Opioid Epidemic
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 25
Membership Matters - March 2018 - Service to Veterans
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 27
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 28
Membership Matters - March 2018 - Dental Foundation of Oregon
Membership Matters - March 2018 - Health Beyond Communities
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 31
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 32
Membership Matters - March 2018 - 33
Membership Matters - March 2018 - Classified Ads
Membership Matters - March 2018 - cover3
Membership Matters - March 2018 - cover4
Membership Matters - March 2018 - outsert1
Membership Matters - March 2018 - outsert2
Membership Matters - March 2018 - outsert3
Membership Matters - March 2018 - outsert4
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