Dental Practice Solutions

Optimize your dental hygiene department by taking an integrated, team approach

  • Do you feel like you are working hard and your production is not increasing?
  • Do you feel like your hygiene department is under performing?
  • Is your hygiene department producing 25-30% of your total production?
  • Are hygienists in your office treating bloody prophys?
  • Does your hygiene department help enroll implant cases and high-end treatment?
  • Do you have one or more holes in your schedule daily?

I am so happy that you are here because we have answers and solutions to your challenges.

Dental Practice Solutions - Debbie Bittke

Five Start Dental Hygiene Care: Doctor Hygiene Exam

By: Debbie

July 22, 2015

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Over the month of July the videos and blogs have focused on Five Star Hygiene Care.

Today’s blog will focus on the Doctor – Hygiene Exam

When you implement these strategies you will:

  • Create Five Star Care
  • Build upon your patient rapport
  • Save time
  • Hear more patients says “YES” to accepting your care, schedule their appointment, pay and return for routine treatment

The Doctor Hygiene Exam should be completed between 25 to 45 minutes into the 60 minute routine hygiene patient appointment

Tips to stay on time and get patients to “YES” :

  • Patients of record can remain in a supine position when doctor enters to complete  the exam
  • New Patients should be officially introduced the beginning or before the hygiene appointment begins (more about this in another blog)
  • The hygienist will sit or stand on the opposite side of doctor (Listen to “Proxemics” description in the video)
  • The hygienist will lead doctor through the exam conversation
  • The hygiene doctor exam should only take 5-7 minutes

Employees need to be trained to know what doctor typically recommends. Part of the initial hiring phase should include an “onboarding phase” where the hygienist learns what doctor expects in various situations. One of these situations will be when doctor diagnoses a crown, and onlay (Possibly and inlay), and implant, etc.

For example: If a patient has decay on a molar with a Class III Amalgam restoration, will doctor typically recommend a crown, an onlay, a composite restoration, or etc? When proper training between the team (in particular the hygienist) and doctor has been completed the hygienist is now in a situation to initiate the treatment planning process.

When the hygienist has been properly trained and the doctor and hygienist have calibrated various exams and services, it will save time in the hygiene appointment and more patients will say “YES” to accepting your care.

  • Is your hygienist calibrated with doctor regarding what is a periodontal patient?
  • Does the hygienist understand when doctor will diagnose a crown or when doctor will consider an implant?
  • Does the hygienist know when to discuss Invisalign and other adjunctive services?

Calibration of services is what our team at Dental Practice Solutions works on with our clients and their team.

We are here to serve you to be sure your hygienists and the entire team understand a philosophy of care which aligns with doctors vision for the practice.

Let us know how we can serve you best.

Do you need to have more information about words to use, scripts to practice and get more patients to say “YES”?

Grab this Free Resource regarding words and phrases that ADD VALUE AND BENEFITS to Your Patient Care.

This EBOOK provides a team approach to total patient care and will increase your case acceptance and production without working harder.



Lead Pages picIn 2000, Debbie founded Dental Practice Solutions, a dental practice management business focused on creating profitable dental hygiene departments, as well as improving the total bottom line of the dental practice. She has been named as one of Dentistry Today’s Top Consultants for 10 years in  row!

Debbie is a former clinical assistant professor from the University of Southern California where she taught the senior dental hygiene students skills to treat periodontal patients. She also co-taught the practice management course  at USC from 200o-2002. (Until the school start PBL – Problem Based Learning) Debbie also wrote the accreditation for a new dental hygiene program in Portland, Oregon and is a former dental hygiene program director.

Debbie has a team of experts to guide teams throughout the world to provide quality, patient centered practices that sustain profits for the life of their dental practice.