'Stay in the chair' dentistry delivers satisfied patients and an improved bottom line

April 24, 2013
Dr. Mark Hyman talks about an injection technique that allows him and his dental team to fully control their anesthesia routine. This one simple addition to his dental practice makes an incredible difference in patient satisfaction and practice productivity.

In today’s ever-changing economy, patient satisfaction has become one of the most important things we can impact to help keep the practice schedule full and operating smoothly. My team and I are constantly looking for ways to stay at the front of pack — through the use of new technologies and consistent team building.


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Game changers

One of the main patient-related experiences we’ve previously never been able to fully control is our local anesthesia routine. Even though we’d try to make our patients as comfortable as possible through superior injection technique, we’d never been able to control the speed at which they become numb, or the sting that’s caused by the low pH of the anesthetic. Typically, once we administered the injection, we would leave the patient’s side to make practical use of the 10 to 15 minutes of downtime while the numbing was taking effect. Usually though, nothing of true value could be accomplished in that time, and, in fact, the patient’s perception of the visit was usually diminished by the fact that the dentist left them to focus on other patients while they sat in discomfort. Enter Onset by Onpharma.

Onset is a chairside buffering technology that allows the dentist to dramatically increase the pH of the anesthetic toward physiologic just before administering. Using the Onset Mixing Pen to buffer my cartridges of anesthetic, I’m now able to deliver the injection, start working within two minutes, and complete the entire procedure without ever leaving the patient’s side, saving the practice more than 10 to 15 minutes per restorative appointment. Patients appreciate the more comfortable injection and the fact that we see them on time and stay with them throughout the entire procedure, making them feel like the center of attention throughout their visit. Onset also allows for more flexibility to handle patients who arrive late for their appointments, deal with emergencies, or make adjustments that keep the practice on schedule.

Now we use Onset on all procedures that require local anesthetic and we stay in the chair, which returns about an hour of production time to the practice per day! That hour is enough to add an extra restorative procedure each day. If you think about the math on that, it can really affect your bottom line. Onset is a simple addition to the practice that can really make a difference in patient satisfaction and practice productivity.

Click here for more information about Dr. Hyman’s seminars.

Mark Hyman, DDS, MAGD, received his undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and his dental degree from the UNC School of Dentistry. Following a four-month internship in Israel, he completed the two-year oral medicine/General Practice Residency at UNC Hospital in Chapel Hill. He teaches at the Pankey Institute in Key Biscayne, Fla., and is an adjunct associate professor at the UNC School of Dentistry. He was honored by the North Carolina Dental Society as Young Dentist of the Year in 1995. He has received the Mastership Award of the Academy of General Dentistry. For seminar information, contact www.tarheeldentist.com or call (336) 282-8850.