It’s an expression so common that it’s become a cliche:, “you have to think outside the box.”
But whether you are inside the box or outside the box, it’s still seen as the “safe space” you can retreat to when things get tough. But is it really that safe?
Let’s take a look at the current state of our business.
- The cost of a dental education continues to skyrocket with an average student debt of almost $300.000!
- There are more Dentists than ever electing to become employee’s rather than owners
- Dental insurance companies are still squeezing the profit out of every procedure making it more and more difficult to be profitable.
Meanwhile, Managed Service Organizations are growing faster and making it even more difficult for solo practitioners or small group practices to succeed.
So I say that it’s time to throw out the box if you want to compete and succeed on your own terms.
There are no shortage of consultants out there ready to give you answers. But most of them have never practiced dentistry. So they have a very limited view of what we are capable of doing and where our businesses can find opportunities to grow.
I still practice dentistry five days a week and I’ve built a large dental practice in Massachusetts with 14 locations providing a full range of dental care to patients.However, changing rules, regulations, and dental insurances are taking a toll. Every year things just seem to get tighter and tighter with very few options on the table to grow.
At least that’s the way it seems if you aren’t willing to kick aside expectations and look for opportunity.
About five years ago I started to implement Botox and Dermal fillers into the Practice. This is a natural progression for dentists and I am here to say to embrace these cosmetic treatments! Get trained, get your team on board and be aggressive and proactive! I challenge you to consider additional treatment modalities that allow you to side-step insurance companies altogether because they are strictly fee-based.
Your position as a trusted practitioner in your community makes you uniquely qualified to perform additional services at a high level and for a full fee
In addition to Botox and Derma fillers, some other treatment options to consider adding to your offerings include:
- Radiofrequency treatments (RF) to tighten the skin around the face and neck. Each treatment takes only 5-10 minutes and maintenance is every 4-12 months.
- Laser treatments to remove red and brown spots on and/or around the face, spider veins, unwanted hair and tattoos as well as scar tissue or wrinkles. Each treatment takes between 25-60 minutes and usually can be completed in 2-4 visit with each visit scheduled 4-6 weeks apart.
- You can also use both RF and Laser to remove unwanted adipose tissue under the chin, sub mental area inner and outer thighs and abdomen. These treatments usually can be completed in 2-6 treatments scheduled 6-8 weeks apart and each session lasting between 25-60 minutes.
- Hydra facials, which replenish the youthfulness of the skin in 30-40 minutes taking years off your patients skin and is maintained by a follow up visit every other month.
- Kybella injections in the sub mental area to remove unwanted fat or adipose tissue causing the dreaded double chin.
- PDO sutures or what is commonly referred to as a lunchtime facelift almost instantly taking years off your face.
Does the thought of providing these services scare you? IT shouldn’t! We may not be Dermatologists or Plastic Surgeons, but we are skilled practitioners who are well positioned to elevate Spa Dentistry to something far above warm towels, relaxing music and simple massages.
You already have a captive clientele. A majority of our patients want to improve their looks. If they aren’t getting it from you they will find an alternate service provider to do it. Take the action steps necessary to position yourself for the future.
For Dentist’s who remember a time when the fee you charged was actually your reimbursement, the proposed treatment options I’m suggesting are all fee for service! They are all considered elective, non-surgical and the demand is high. Interest and awareness is enormous so consider adding additional procedures and services to you practice today. Be first to implement this in your area – not the last.
Of course you need to be aware of your state’s regulations. Some states may require you to work indirectly or directly under a Physician’s license. Other states may require you to have an Esthetician’s license. However in most cases, you will delegate these procedures to a Physician Assistant, Nurse or Lic. Esthetician
In 1983, my first year in business, I put in my first dental implant. Back then there were enormous resistance,s, but today, only 3 decades later, it is considered the standard of care in many cases. So throw out that box, step out of your comfort zone and consider the possibilities!
Kevin Coughlin DMD, MAGD, MBA, LE is a practicing general dentist, who has a consulting business, Ascent Dental Solutions LLC, with a focus on education, training development and knowledge. Dr. Coughlin has a Non-Surgical company called Ascent Laser Aesthetics LLC. He has taught practice management, lectured and written six books on the business of dentistry with an expertise in dealing with MSO’s and DSO’s. Dr. Coughlin has over 100 podcast on Apple radio, Ascent Radio and several webinars. His last book is the Non-Surgical Guide to Aesthetics, available on Amazon, to help patients and clients along with team members to understand quickly and easily options to make you beautiful on the outside.
And he knows that once you “get it right,” it’s not a great leap to replicate that success over and over again.
Today, in addition to his work as an actual dentist, Dr. Coughlin coaches, consults and speaks to dentists across the country on how to build the practice of their dreams – based on proven processes and procedures.
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