FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEDentists Admit to Office Hanky-Panky with Patients in National Survey Results
Male dentists are more likely than their female counterparts to have
dated a dental patient, according to a recent Wealthy Dentist survey. Mixing business with pleasure can be risky, and most dental professionals advise against it. However, that's not enough to stop one in five dentists from having a relationship with a patient.
(San Francisco, California) November 5, 2007 – Do dentists date their patients? Some do, some frolic and some live happily ever after.
A recent survey conducted by TheWealthyDentist.com revealed that dentist-patient dating is not as rare as one might think. The nationwide survey found that one in five dentists, including male and female dentists, reports becoming romantically involved with a patient at some point in their careers.
However, male dentists were significantly more likely to mix business and pleasure with patients than their female counterparts (or are at least they are more willing to confess they do). Recounts a male implantologist, "I became romantically involved with several patients when I was single, young and foolish.” Adds a female general dentist with a similar frame of mind, "When I first started as a dentist and was working in a clinic, I had a relationship with a patient. I was young and foolish then. I wouldn't advise it now!"
Mixing romance with work can be risky. Most dental professionals advise against it. Female dentists are especially likely to find dating a patient not just unprofessional, but totally unacceptable. "I'm in the military — it would be a career ender for me to become involved with my patients," comments a female Georgia dentist. "Totally inappropriate!" says another from Pennsylvania. "It’s wrong according to the Hippocratic Oath," opines a third female dentist from Illinois.
Men, though, are more likely to comment on the fact that "romantic chemistry just happens," as a male Connecticut dentist sighs. "Not an issue that I should care about if it doesn’t affect my work," adds a California male. "I believe it’s okay. There can be chemistry that takes place between a man and a lady irrespective of the patient-doctor thing," says a male dental student responding from Africa.
Some dental practices attempt to avoid these situations: Cautions a female California dentist, "That seems like a lawsuit waiting to happen!" "Business and personal relationships must be kept separate," advises a male dentist in New York. "It’s discouraged in our practice," says a female dentist from Oregon. In Massachusetts, a dentist suggests different standards for dentists and their staff members. He says, "If a team member dates a patient and they keep it professional, it’s okay. But a dentist should not date patients."
For some, there’s a fairytale ending
Yet both male and female dentists report marrying patients. Boasts a Wisconsin dentist, "She's beautiful, brilliant, tall and blonde. I would never have asked her out. She asked me out! Now she is my business partner — and my wife. Life is good," “I am the dentist,” recounts
another from Nevada. "My hygienist fixed us up at the time. That was 12 years ago and we have been together ever since. The best years of my life." And one woman writes, "Only once and I married him!"
For this New Jersey dentist, though, it turned out to be more than he bargained for. His candid admission: "I was a dentist for years prior to my marriage. When I was single, I'd ask patients for a date or they would ask me. It was never an issue. I probably went out with at least a dozen or so patients. (Except for the time when three girlfriends were in my waiting room at the same time!) Some women were very aggressive when approaching me for a date. One told me, 'Hey, dentists are a dime a dozen, but new boyfriends don't grow on trees.' Today, after 15 years of marriage, I still treat many of my former girlfriends, their children and also their husbands."
Dentistry can be frisky business
Observes Jim Du Molin, dental consultant and president of TheWealthyDentist.com, "I see it all the time. Romance happens in the waiting room. I've heard horror stories over the years on how romances went wrong… and nice stories about how they went right. I think it’s a case of ‘You never know.’ To me, it looks like the responding male dentists are… well, it’s a case of, boys will be boys. The responding female dentists seem more practical and sensible to the pluses and minuses of doctor-patient romances. Anything is possible. You be the judge.”
For more on this survey and other Wealthy Dentist surveys in the areas of what dentists think about life in their practices today, dental implants, cosmetic dentistry, sedation dentistry, dentures, and much more, visit www.thewealthydentist.com/surveys.htm.
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