The tragedy at our local elementary school this spring was the husband of one of the third grade teachers who cut his finger at work. He washed it and put a small bandage on it. In fact, he washed it every day. It did not seem to get much better, but because it did not hurt, he just kept cleaning it until his wife, the teacher, insisted he go and have it checked out. By the time the lab results came back testing him positive for a staph infection, it had spread throughout his entire body and he ultimately passed away.
If only the wound had been checked and the lab test done earlier, he could have been treated for the staph infection in a timely manner and his life would have been saved.
The way this wound was initially treated is similar to how many patients, and frankly, many dental practices, treat periodontal disease. “Just clean it.” Unfortunately, just trying keeping the “wound” clean won’t take care of the ultimate problem.
How we think about periodontal disease and how it is treated has changed. It is no longer just site-specific. It is a systemic problem. Grasping the concept and emotionally embracing it is as big of a problem for some practitioners as it is for patients.
Making the shift requires several steps:
1. Totally understanding the true nature of periodontal disease and its systemic and total health consequences.
2. Having the right diagnostics in place, including Oral DNA, that will identify the type and severity of the systemic problem.
3. New treatment modules that address the “whole” problem, not just the localized problem.
4. Presentation and verbal skills that help patients make the shift and embrace the problem and what it will take on their part to treat it.
Earlier this year, I watched with amazement as this transformation took place in the professional lives of entire dental teams with which we work.
We invited Dr. Tommy Nabors and his dental team from Nashville to come spend the day presenting how they think about, approach, and treat periodontal disease in their practice. Within a few short hours, entire perspectives were changed and the teams walked out with a new commitment to treat the disease in a new, more comprehensive way. Over the months that have followed, I have observed that commitment come to life in the lives of the patients they treat. The teams have changed, and because they have changed, their patients changed as well.
Don’t miss a great opportunity to have your team experience the same thing on August 26-27, 2011 as Dr. Nabors and his team open their office to a few, select dental teams as they present their entire periodontal therapy program and how they use it every day in their practice. Their case acceptance results are just as impressive as their clinical results not to mention the fact that this team of three hygienists does over $1 million in hygiene production a year. It will change your perspective. It will change the lives of your patients. And with what we know about the far-reaching, total health consequences of periodontal disease it will save lives.
For more information on Dr. Nabors and his course, call 1-877-399-8677 or e-mail: Answers@TotalPatientService.com