I was previously interviewed by Lisa Moler of MedMark Media on the DocTalk Dental Podcast to talk about endo technology that saves me tons of time, and I wanted to share our conversation with you!
Here’s the audio, and I’ve written out some highlights below.
Endo Technology to Save Time
Endo technology I use in my practice:
Number one is my microscope. It lets me see everything! After all, if you can’t see something, how are you going to treat it? (This is one of the perks of attending E-School LIVE. You’ll get to play with all my tools in my clinic!)
I’ve also fully embraced the cone beam (CBCT) in my practice. I value it because it adds a layer of predictability into my treatments. It also totally changes the tone of the conversation that I have with my patients, allowing them to understand the WHY of their treatment plan. It helps with case acceptance, takes guesswork out of diagnosis, and helps me make reliable treatment plans. (And if a tooth isn’t savable, I can know that before going in, saving that patient time and money.)
Third is GentleWave. It has so many benefits. First, procedures that used to take two visits now only take one. Second, patients are in so much less pain. And third, it’s able to clean areas that I know I cannot treat with a rotary file, a hand file, or an irrigation syringe.
How GentleWave helps me work faster and more efficiently:
Previously, I had to take all that gutta percha out, place calcium hydroxide, let it sit for several weeks, and then bring the patient back in for a second visit and instrument again. About 50% of my patients had to come back in for a second visit pre-GentleWave.
Now, what I can see is way cleaner after seven minutes of GentleWave than what my patient went through before. The timeframe has really shrunk for my patients, making them much happier with the process. I can literally almost double the number of patients I can see in a given time frame. My practice, Ballantyne Endodontics, is a 90% one-visit office now. That’s how big of a difference GentleWave has made for me.
There are benefits for my patients, too. When I go to obturate and take my final radiograph, I see that my sealer is in areas I never would have been able to reach with my traditional armamentarium.
Plus I’m seeing so much less post-op pain for my patients! Since I’ve incorporated this awesome piece of endo technology into my practice in October 2018, I have not had to prescribe anything stronger than Advil. When I call my patients the next day, they generally have very little pain. And my patients often only take their pain relief medication for one day instead of the three I prescribe!
Let me tell you, it’s nice not to be called over the weekend! And I’ve been able to reduce my work days in the clinic from 3 days a week to 2, allowing more doctors to come into my practice to increase patient load and profitability.
And with fewer second visits, I’m able to get patients in quicker and fill that return visit with a new patient. That means a more efficient and profitable practice at the end of the day.
Advice I’d give to dentists wanting to open their own practice:
There’s a lot of fear involved in opening your own practice. What if something goes wrong? What if it’s not profitable? I didn’t get an MBA, I got a DDS!
But if you commit to doing right by your patients, and you treat people well, you’ll have loyal patients and referring dentists for life.
Piece of wisdom to leave you with:
There are not so many cracked teeth out there as you might imagine. It’s so often bacterial. (Which is just one more reason to love the GentleWave — it can really help in those cases!) Our mouths are the gateway to our body, and our teeth are so important. So the more we can save them, the healthier we will be overall.
Do you use any time-saving endo technology in your practice? Are you considering investing in some? Tell me in the comments!