The Simplest Ways For Your Hygiene Department to Super-Charge Their Value and Worth to Your Dental Office

Last week I discussed that I have seen Dental Hygienists adding value to their Dental Office and to their own worth in those Dental Offices.

And one of the best ways for a Dental Hygienist to add value to her Dental Office is for her to know her numbers.

I’m continually surprised when I come across a health care professional, like a hygienist or a dentist, who does *NOT* have an exact idea as to what they need to produce, treat and co-diagnose on a daily, weekly, monthly and even hourly basis.

Frankly, going about your dental business in this manner is about as effective as driving your car with the fuel gauge covered over, the clock covered over, and your Sat Nav turned off, *EVERY TIME*!!!

It’s just sheer stupidity.

Without these numbers, without keeping check and keeping score, you’re just a wandering generality…. you’ll just keep meandering aimlessly and arrive at a goal of nothing…

But I see Doctors do it, and I see hygienists do it, day in and day out.

On the flip side, and I know I’m meant to be tidying up on the last two weeks of valuable hygiene blogs, on the flip side, a dental office with targets and target-focused providers is a safer more secure office to be employed in and is also a safer and more secure dental office at which to be receiving treatment.

Because it’s just a well run machine…. it operates well.

Take a look at Formula 1 Pit Crews. Can you imagine a Pit Crew operating with no ideas on time frames, efficiencies, goals and outcomes?

It would be just an out and out rabble, and mess!

And it’s the same in dentistry.

If your doctor and your hygienist don’t have a daily number, and an hourly number feeding into that daily number, well the dental office is walking along the precipice of failure and doom.

So back to hygiene….

I mentioned last week that the real value of a great dental hygienist for a dental office is her ability to help the dentist in finding defects and decay in the mouths of the patients that she sees and treats. Her true worth is her ability to plant the seeds in the patients’ minds as to what sort of treatment they may need to rectify any such defects.

And I also mentioned that a great dental hygienist will have a thorough and complete list of findings ready for the doc on each and every patient, and how having this ready makes everybody’s life so much easier.

Over the last twelve months I’ve had the pleasure of collaborating with a specialist hygiene department adviser who teaches dental hygienists how to consistently add value to their dental office by co-diagnosing $6000.00 to $10,000.00 and beyond in dental treatment required straight there and then day in and day out out of the hygiene room.

As a dentist, it’s an absolute joy to have a dental hygienist switched on and focused on seeing defects and alerting patients to those defects and best possible treatment alternatives well in advance of my arrival into the hygiene room for the examination.

No patient wants to have a tooth crack in an unwanted and awkward situation.

A great hygienist will use the intra-oral camera to photograph all areas of concern and bring these images up on the big screen monitors in the treatment room so that the patient is well aware of the extent of the areas of concern well ahead of time before the doctor’s arrival.

I can’t tell you how pleasant it is to work in an office where patients are informed of findings and educated on best treatment by the hygiene department well ahead of time.

And having a hygienist who operates from a position of assisting the doctor in finding and alerting him in advance re these observations makes life for the doctor and the dental office as a whole, far less stressful.

And I’ve seen first hand where these sorts of hygienists and these dental offices are operating successfully.

But the dentist needs to be on board as well…..

Because whether it’s the dentist, or the hygienist, or the treatment coordinator, if any one of those three is not working “with the programme” then the programme is doomed.

A chain is only as strong as it’s weakest link…and having any one of these three operators with their eye off the numbers, with their eye off the ball, adds unnecessary stress to the whole entire dental office.

Producing sufficient dentistry to pay the overheads of the dental office, the wages of the staff and the dentist, and return a dividend to the owners and shareholders should be the primary driver of that successful office.

Diagnosing and presenting treatment efficiently and effectively removes unnecessary stresses of needing to attract more new patients.

Goals and targets get results.

Goals get hit.

Having no target?

Well that’s just wrong…

You’ll always hit a target you never have..

If you don’t know where you’re going you’ll always end up exactly there…nowhere in particular….

So get focused, know your numbers, and kick goals!


Well structured productive hygiene is one key  part of  building and operating The Ultimate Patient Experience, a simple easy to implement system that I developed that allowed me to build an extraordinary dental office in an ordinary Sydney suburb.  If you’d like to know more, ask me about my free special report.

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