Week in Review: Periodontitis and psoriasis | Patient bonds | Dental treatment and substance abuse

Dear DrBicuspid Member,

Do any of your patients have itchy, red skin? Maybe it's just winter, but it could be the condition known as psoriasis. These patients may also have an increased risk for periodontal disease, according to the findings of a new study.

What keeps patients coming back to a practice? It's not just high-quality care or taking a particular insurance plan -- it is having a person bond with a patient, notes Dr. Roger P. Levin in his latest Practice Success tip. Your practice can stand out by building strong relationships with patients and letting them know that they are the office's No. 1 concern.

Simply put, not only do I think Dr. Levin is correct here, but I've lived it. When our dental insurance plan changed, my family and I chose to stay with our dental home of more than 25 years not just because it's a great practice, but because we feel like they take care of us as people. They've put in a lot of time with us over the years, and we're happy to repay that commitment.

As adolescents transition to greater independence and adulthood, what determines whether they adhere to recommended dental treatments? A new study asked this vital question, finding that socioeconomic and substance abuse issues played an important role in how they take care of their teeth and gums.

Finally this week, consultant Jen Butler reminds us that it's easy to get caught up in fearful or negative thinking. Maybe you've got a difficult procedure scheduled first thing in the morning with a patient who gags, or perhaps you're having second thoughts about a technology investment. She's had many clients with these same fears, and she offers three ways to change this mindset.

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