The message of patient safety has become paramount for dental practices. A key element of that will be reducing the amount of time in the chair and, equally important, reducing the number of visits to complete treatment. Now, more than ever, CAD/CAM technology will become an integral part of your marketing strategy as well as your treatment strategy.
Same day restorations may have been mildly interesting to patients six months ago. And even then, only to patients who’ve already had a temporary done before and didn't enjoy the process. But now, the idea of finishing their treatment in one visit versus two is going to be incredibly appealing to patients.
Now's the time to incorporate CEREC or similar technology into your practice, if you haven't already. The data has long been there demonstrating that you only have to do four or five crowns in a month to pay for the technology. But factor in the marketing value, attracting your reluctant patients back and also attracting new ones, and it becomes essential.
Promoting this technology will help encourage patients to return and get the work done that they need to get done, treatments that were perhaps diagnosed three or four months ago. That was all put on hold. We know now that as many as 50% of patients are reluctant to return to their current dentist. Give them reasons to feel safe, and they’ll find their way back.
CEREC also makes your practice remarkable, one that patients are going to talk about and say, “Not only did they do everything to make the practice safe, they incorporated technology to reduce the number of visits. I love that.”
Furthermore, you will also be able to take somebody right out of hygiene and do a complete treatment, if you are diagnosing it right there. You can simply ask, “Would you like this all taken care of today, while you're here?” Because of this safety issue, you can expect a much higher acceptance rate of immediate treatment.
Most dentists have heard the multiple advantages of CAD/CAM technology. Savings in lab costs, less treatment time not having to make and remove a temporary, and the fact that you can often do a three-quarter onlay rather than a full crown restoration makes an enormous difference in minimally invasive treatment. And the restorative block material choices and shades have been constantly improving.
Beyond that, if you were to combine cone beam technology and CEREC, you could perform an implant from start to finish in a single visit. Once again, doubly appealing to patients.
Adding CEREC gives you a dual-pronged safety message. First, you are using additional PPE and procedures to protect the patient, but now also incorporating technology that reduces the number of visits. This is very comforting and persuasive.
To be able to say, “We will be finished your treatment today. You don't have to come back.” That's impactful. That's memorable. And as a marketing message you have several avenues to promote it. Put it on your website that you offer same day restorations, and your Facebook, Google, Yelp and Instagram profiles, and email your patients, and let them know you have added this technology. If you already have CEREC, now is the perfect time to let your patients know that this is a safety advantage as well as a treatment option.
Also understand that, now more than ever, the various manufacturers and distributors are making deals so that you can get this technology. They are doing it as much for concern for you during the current crisis as they are about themselves and having revenue.
Seize this opportunity to upgrade your practice. It will pay dividends through this pandemic crisis and far beyond.