The Bitebank Blog


What is Right for Your Practice Growth?

So many choices…


April 07, 2015 | Posted Tuesdays With Transitions | Be the first one to comment.

Dentistry is changing at an alarming rate in regards to providers, consolidation, influence of the dental team, patient retention/ loyalty changes, the power of the mother in health care and the national plateau of financial growth

The role of insurance benefits and fee guides, combined with high competition in urban centers, drives dental services to be commoditized while the patient’s out of pocket spending brings the demand for a higher level of service.

This is a lot to manage on your own and now is the time to find, choose, maximize and partner with the multitude of options available to overcome all challenges posed to dentistry.  Seeking out and hiring experts to support your practice and avoid becoming complacent is not a sign of weakness, but a sign of courage and strength.

The choices of resources available come in many different modes and each choice has it’s pros and cons which need to be considered by the parties involved.


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Intra Oral Camera Experience

Making the patient experience larger than life…

March 31, 2015 | Posted in Tuesdays With Transitions | Be the first one to comment


The expression, “a picture is worth a thousand words” says it all when speaking of the benefits of using the intra oral camera to increase production for today’s dental practice.

When a patient sees the larger than life images of their teeth, and/or tissue projected onto the computer screen, the intra oral camera becomes a tool for adding value to the patient experience through co-discovery and gaining the trust that we, as dental professionals, seek in order for the patient to accept our diagnosis and subsequent treatment plan.

When dealing with human nature, the key to success in any situation is for the person to own their problem (i.e. their diagnosis).  It is imperative that the intra oral camera is implemented at every dental appointment to enroll and engage the patient in their appointment and their treatment plan.


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Step by Step Tips for Communicating in Front of the Patient…

Prompting the Doctor

March 24, 2015 | Posted in Tuesdays With Transitions | Be the first one to comment

As we discussed last week, “Prompting the Dr.” is a concrete, routine way for a hygienist and a dentist to communicate clearly out loud in front of the patient.  It allows the dentist to maintain uniqueness of diagnosis and treatment plans while receiving patient information in the same way and order every time.

The prompting system begins when the Dr. enters the hygiene operatory.  Be sure to state the patient’s name, so the dentist can be reminded of who is sitting in the chair.  Once gloves are on, begin with the first step of prompting: personal information review.  Relay something personal that the patient shared or disclosed about their family, occupation or what they do for recreation.  This eases the approach and builds immediate connection between the dentist and patient.

e.g:. Dr., Mrs. Smith just returned from a two-week vacation in Mexico

Next, is the second step of prompting, which is a Medical History Review.  Provide a general medical health statement that encompasses a review of the patient overall wellness and medical concerns.  Areas to cover may include information such as medications, systemic diseases, risk factors or hospitalization.

e.g:. “Since Mrs. Smith’s has developed early onset diabetes that she controls with diet.  No other changes noted.


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Hygiene Exam Management-Necessary Evil

Communicating in front of the patient……

March 17, 2015 | Posted in Tuesdays With Transitions | Be the first one to comment

A common “stressor” and challenge that is often expressed is the juggling of multi-provider schedules while trying to fit in multiple hygiene exams throughout the day.

The hygiene exams are absolutely necessary for patient care, diagnosis of restorative dentistry, coding and billing, as well as legislative requirements.

The hygiene exam often is seen as an interruption that can cause chaos and “running behind” for everyone.  This chaos creates negative stress that inevitably affects the dentist’s ability to properly assess, diagnose and treatment plan the day-to-day dentistry that fills his/her restorative schedule.  This chaos is best overcome with the development of a consistent process to review the oral health while building patient relationships.

On average, the “recall or hygiene” check should take approximately three to five minutes of the Dr.’s time in the hygiene room.   In order to achieve this, it is vital to have a system for the smooth transfer of the information gathered by the hygienist, in the 45-55 minutes that she has spent with the patient, to the dentist in a short time frame of a few minutes.

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The difference that makes a difference…

March 10, 2015 | Posted in Tuesdays With Transitions | Be the first one to comment


We can all get tripped up here if we miss the difference between doing everything that we know and doing whatever it takes.

Let’s say we intend to produce a specific result.  In your heart, you know that you’re committed.   You do everything you know how to do, but the result does not occur.

What this means is that everything you know is not what it takes to produce this result and true commitment, without progress, means it is time for support, coaching, or training.

In the realm of commitment, there is no grey; there is 100% or nothing.  If I claim to be 90% committed, what lives in the 10%, that I hold back, is all of my potential excuses and the back doors I leave open for non-performance.

World class players and teams know that commitment begins with speaking and ends with results.

If I set out to “try” to accomplish a goal or “maybe” do something, there is not much chance of it being accomplished.

    •    When I am clear about my commitment, I am action-oriented.

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The Most Effective Way to Confront a Problem

How to Go to The Source


December 09, 2014 | Posted in Tuesdays With Transitions


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As discussed last week, when “I OWN” the problem, it means my needs are not being met and I have a responsibility to GO TO THE SOURCE (the person).  The source is the person whose words or actions are not acceptable to you and is the ONLY one who can solve your problem.

This is called positive confrontation messages.  Confrontation is “Face to Face” and does not need to be a battle of blame and defensive reactions.  The goals of effective confrontation include:

1.    Getting your needs met through a change in the other’s words or behavior.
2.    Preserving the other’s self-esteem and not attacking.
3.    Maintain the relationship of mutual respect.


Communicating your true feelings directly and openly provides not only you with relief and results but also gives the other person a chance to adjust or change their behavior. It doesn’t work to blame, criticize or attack another by using messages that begin with “YOU’.

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Are You Reaching Out for Your Patients?…

Patient-Driven Practice Test, Part 2

November 04, 2014 | Posted in Tuesdays With Transitions | Be the first one to comment


For each characteristic, rate the extent to which the statement is true about your practice, using this scale.

1 – Not at all
2 – To a small extent
3 – To a moderate extent
4 – To a great extent
5 – To a very great extent

Then add up the scores for each cluster in the space entitled Your Score.  Next, calculate your percentage rating by dividing your score by the highest possible score.

Using and Communicating Patient Information  

1.  We know how our patients define “quality”.
2.  We provide opportunities for employees at various levels and functions to meet with patients.
3.  We clearly understand what our patients expect of our organization.
4.  We regularly give information to patients that helps shape realistic expectations.
5.  Our administrative team clearly understand our patient’s requirements.
6.  Within the organization, there is agreement about who our “real customer” is.
7.  Everyone in the office has frequent contact with our patients.

Your Score Divided by a possible 35 %

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Are You Missing Your Most Vital Source Of Energy?

Don’t Dry Out: Hydrate!


October 06, 2014 | Posted in Tuesdays With Transitions | Be the first one to comment


Water is as important to the human body as the air we breathe.  We can go weeks without food but only a day or two without water. (Don’t forget to breathe!) 
The human body is composed of 70% water and no other essential nutrient is lost from the body as fast as water. The typical adult loses 2 to 3 liters (1-1.4 lbs) daily through urine, breath and sweat.
If water is not replaced at the same level that is being lost, then dehydration occurs and adverse effects such as high blood pressure, fatigue, poor digestion, constipation, headaches, kidney and bladder issues, premature aging and skin problems. 

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Great Financial Conversations

Get Off To A Great Start


September 29, 2014 | Posted in Tuesdays With Transitions | Be the first one to comment
One of the most important discussions with patients is when you share with them their financial responsibilities and options.  Great financial conversations provide full disclosure and begin to set patient expectations as early in the relationship as possible — sometimes even before the patient’s first appointment.

Often, the first interaction the patient has with your practice is online – they review your practice’s website or social media sites.  These sites are primarily used to introduce patients to your practice, doctors and team.  But, these sites can also be an ideal place to begin the financial conversation. By including information on your financial policy and payment options, you can address cost concerns before they become a barrier to care.
Patients should be able to easily understand how your practice manages dental insurance, including which insurance plans are accepted, and the payment options available should there be a gap between the cost of care and the patient’s dental benefits or for patients without dental benefits.  It is also important to let the patients know if you accept patient financing like the CareCredit credit card. This can help patients focus on care instead of worrying about insurance benefits and how they are going to fit treatment into their family budget.

Are You Sleeping On The JOB?

New research on the total body impact of sleep…

Tuesdays with Transitions Blog

September 15, 2014 | Posted in Tuesdays With Transitions | Be the first one to comment


Dentistry is a profession that has many demands on our physical body, cognitive skills and learning and our emotional energy which requires a good night sleep to rejuvenate, refuel and refresh the body, brain and heart for the next day.

Research shows that a good night sleep impacts the brain and memory by flushing out the beta amyloid proteins that build up during the day and which are a biomarker for Alzheimer’s. 7 hours of sleep a night reduces our chance of heart disease and it also impacts the body by reducing aches and joint problems and reduces the desire for high calorie food that causes obesity.

Are you feeling tired during the day?  Do you get drowsy in the late morning? Are you physically fatigued with joint pain? Do you have trouble falling asleep at night?  Are you staying asleep? Do you make time to sleep the right amount of hours?

It is estimated that 30% of North Americans adult and children are sleep deprived; 18 million Americans suffer and approximately 7 million Canadians have sleep disorders.  Sleep research also shows that 50% of adults toss and turn at least 2-5 nights a week, with trouble getting to sleep or waking in the middle of the night.

The following is a collected list “Do’s and Don’ts” for a good night sleep.

  • Buy a solid and sturdy, quiet bed
  • Change the mattress every 8 years
  • Invest in a high end pillow with buckwheat husks.

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