When a dental practice is structured primarily around leveraging insurance reimbursement patterns and maximizing profits, the treatment provided too easily becomes transactional rather than transformative.
When this type of thinking becomes pervasive within an organization, it also becomes easy to label people, to misread them, and to project upon them what we are think they think. And from there, it becomes easy to believe that many people are arrogant, egotistical, and only interested in looking out for themselves.
But this cynical world-view towards patients is largely a characterization facilitated by environment and culture and is only rarely reality. Because most people are actually the opposite….they are distracted and shouldering unspoken burdens… they are embarrassed and sometimes ashamed, and instead of being motivated by narcissistic tendencies, the driver behind their behavior is that they don’t value themselves enough, consequently they don’t take care of themselves very well.
Hence the shame.
Hence the embarrassment.
People who don’t believe that they are worthy of the best of care are rarely going to choose it. And often paradoxically, these very same people believe that others in their lives are more worthy of the best – that it is others who shouldn’t suffer with pain, disfigurement, or lack of self-esteem. Consequently, they commonly make sacrifices for others at their own expense.
But these are personal truths we can only sense and come to know over time with people. And these are truths which are well beyond what a transactional relationship can reveal.
Sometimes, we can be the very first person in another’s life who communicates to them that they are indeed worthy of taking care of themselves better. And that they are even worthy of the very best dentistry has to offer.
Paul A Henny, DDS
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