5 Ways to Make (and Keep) Dental Patients Happy
Keeping dental patients happy is the key to running a successful dental office. It will simultaneously earn you return business while preventing patients from moving to your competition. To keep your dental patients happy, follow these five tips.
#1: Start With the Perfect Waiting Room Environment
Everything begins with your waiting room. It’s the first thing patients see when entering your office, and they will definitely spend some time there before treatment. Creating a comfortable waiting room experience will keep patients happy before treatment and will keep them coming back to your office.
Try adding these features to your waiting room:
- Comfortable waiting room furniture
- Televisions, magazines and other forms of entertainment
- Free wifi and charging stations for devices
- If possible, a children’s area (away from other guests) with toys
#2: Keep Patients Comfortable During Treatment
It’s important to keep the comfortable experience going beyond the waiting room. While your standard dental chair will provide a base level of comfort, there are certain dental chair accessories, such as headrests, chair pads, knee supports, etc, that will add extra layers of comfort for your patients.
Remember that the happier and more relaxed patients are, the easier they are to treat. They will also be far more likely to return to your office over others in the area.
#3: Remember That Dental Anxiety is Real
Studies have shown that a staggering 75% of people deal with some form of dental anxiety. While many of these are minor cases, there is a substantial number of people who suffer from severe anxiety as a result of going to the dentist. This causes many people to skip their visits altogether. Dentists and hygienists can confront this issue by providing a soothing dental treatment experience by:
- Using music and televisions in treatment rooms as a distraction
- Fully explaining what they are doing during treatment
- Asking permission before touching the patient
- Using ample padding on dental chairs to keep patients comfortable, calm and stable
#4: Make Paying Bills Easy
In the modern era, people want convenience with everything. The easier you make it for patients to pay their bills, the happier they will be (you’ll also be happier when you see people paying their bills quickly, more often and on time). Make it a point to accept multiple payment types and even consider setting up an online portal where patients can pay their bills online.
#5: Take Time to Get to Know Them
It’s surprising how many dentists don’t know that much about their patients. Too many dental office shuttle patients in and out as quickly as possible, which is good and bad for business. While more patients equals more money, shuttling people in and out makes them feel like they aren’t properly cared for. Strike a balance by treating quickly, but also by taking the time to get to know them so that they feel welcomed and well cared for when they come to see you.