During spring break 2018, I traveled to Quito, Ecuador with my classmates and local dentists. I had never gone on a mission trip before, so I tried to approach everything with an open mind and enthusiasm. It was one of the best decisions of my life, and I can’t wait to go back next year. Since dental schools are increasing the availability of international service trips, here are a few things to keep in mind.
Occasionally, dental school can get you down, make you frown, make you want to pack up and leave town. But if you’re looking to turn that frown upside down, you don’t have to look much further than our incredible ASDA chapters across the country. All of these videos have one thing in common: having fun!
In this episode of Let’s Talk, Christian Pearson, National Director of Dental Partnerships at Treloar & Heisel speaks with Stephen Trutter, Director of Consulting & Partner at Ideal Practices, a national consulting firm focused on the needs of private practice dentistry.
My first involvement with organized dentistry happened when a dentist from the Great Houston Dental Society (GHDS) invited me to Texas Mission of Mercy. I took on the opportunity, which opened the door for other community service outreach that provided free dental care for veterans and underserved populations. These experiences reminded me that we have the potential to generate a positive impact on others’ lives, even with the smallest amount of help we can provide. Together with our mutual passion and skills, we were able to improve the health of our community. Without this cooperation and guidance, none of this would have been possible.
For dental students, science has never been subjective. We sit through semesters of organic chemistry and anatomy in college, spending long nights trying to understand the path to the right answer (because there’s always a right answer) to the complex problems our professors throw at us. We are well-tuned machines of memorization and comprehension.
If you search the word “normal,” the definition you’ll see resembles this: “conforming to a standard, usual, typical or expected.” In a world where labels and definitions are engraved in our minds, I am redefining normal.
Of all the responsibilities in the dental office, one of the most important is building patient relationships. The entire success of the practice depends upon the result of our ability to understand your patients as individuals, recognize and respond to their needs/wants and your ability to guide them to an informed decision that is in their own best interest. The dental school tends to focus on the technical aspects every dentist should have; however strategies on how to effectively communicate with patients isn’t always a focus in the curriculum.