News From The Wealthy Dentist #29: January 24, 2007
by Jim Du Molin
Build It and They Will Come… Give Me a Break!
Over the last five years I have watched the dental spa phenomenon continue to grow. Generally I’m supportive of this kind of innovation. Then again, in some cases, I think it may have gotten out of hand.
I just received a press release about a dental practice in Woodstock, New York. Tischler Dental Studios is opening a 10,000 square foot facility that includes 12 operatories. It will be staffed by 3 cosmetic dentists, 6 assistants and 3 hygienists in addition to office personnel. Located on a secluded 9-acre property in the Catskill Mountains, the goal is to provide patients with “a dental spa vacation.”
Upon visiting their website, I must admit that I was impressed with the architectural and design aspects of their facility. The part I question is the wisdom of building such a facility on a “secluded 9-acre property in the Catskill Mountains.” I have to ask, what is the marketing plan that will support such a facility and staff?
I was reminded of a past client who came to us after building a ten-operatory
practice twelve miles from the nearest rural town on the frontage road of a
major highway two and a half miles from the nearest exit. Somehow he couldn’t
understand why he couldn’t keep his two associates busy in his new Taj Mahal
facility. I asked him why he built it so far from where the people were; his
answer was that’s where he could get cheap land.
The solution to his problem was an outrageously large sign situated next to the
freeway that rivaled anything you would find on the Vegas strip. The darn thing used enough electricity to power a small town, but it delivered forty-plus new patients a month.
When building a new facility, it is always a good idea to have done your calculations first. Start with the net increase in monthly operating expenses needed to keep the new doors open. Then add in any additional marketing costs,
plus a serious increase in your net profit to justify the economic risk of the new venture. Once you’ve figured that out, you need to calculate the net contribution of an average new patient, then divide that into your increased
expenses to determine how many additional new patients you’re going to need to justify this new venture to your spouse.
Now you will notice that I mentioned “additional marketing costs” as part of your needed calculations. Don’t wait until you complete your new monument to begin thinking of how you are going to fill it with enough additional new
patients to pay for it. Remember, “Build It and They Will Come” may make for a great screen story, but life is not a movie script.
Jim Du Molin
Northern Michigan Dental Practice For Sale on eBay
Have you been thinking about buying a dental practice? Well, eBay is here to make the process of buying a practice easier than ever before — with an online auction! Just send the seller $330,000 via PayPal and it’s yours.
You’ll definitely want to check out the
online listing for the practice. With two locations and a total of eight operatories, the practice has been grossing over half a million dollars a year. Though the former owner has practiced in the area since 1992, the offices themselves are newly refurbished with cutting-edge equipment and computer systems.
The listing is being handled by QuickSELLit on behalf of the unnamed dentist who must sell due to illness. The dentist is “open to all options including full sale, partnership, associateship — all options proposed will be considered.”
Warning: This listing is not for eBay junkies who buy things without thinking through their purchases!
The Oral/Systemic Link: How Long Has This Been Going On?
by Valerie Williams, Registered Dental Hygienist
Health professionals are finally starting to see the deep connections between dental health and general health. Awareness began with the Surgeon General’s 2000 report, the first to discuss the importance of dental health to a patient’s overall health. It is impossible to have one without the other!
Over the years various studies and research projects have supported this premise. The oral/systemic link is clear and strong. Consumer magazines from AARP to Readers’ Digest inform the public on this important issue. As mentioned
last week, even insurance companies are taking notice and enhancing benefits.
Dr. Williams Maas, the director of the division of oral health at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, was recently quoted in the AARP Bulletin: “Dental care is just as important as medical care, hospital care and
prescription drugs. It is inconsistent for society to recognize that oral health is important yet treat dental care as if it were discretionary.”
Dental teams need to educate themselves first and then their patients. Everyone on the team should be able to succinctly explain what the oral/systemic link means: Bacteria from chronic periodontal infections can travel through the bloodstream to the heart and other organs.
Normal metabolic processes produce reactive byproducts that can do damage if not kept under control. Among these are three forms of oxygen (molecular oxygen, peroxide and superoxide) that react by taking electrons from other molecules, a process called oxidation. The body reacts by providing antioxidants, compounds that can be oxidized without harming the body. Researchers have found that, as we get older, our bodies are less effective at handling oxidization. The enzymes that catalyze the reactions may be in short supply, or antioxidants may not be
as abundant as in younger bodies.
In addition, bacteria from chronic periodontal infections can travel through the bloodstream to the heart and other organs. Researchers are also exploring the connection between periodontal disease and inflammation elsewhere in the body. Patients who have periodontal disease are more susceptible to developing other diseases. Patients who have coronary heart disease, diabetes, are pregnant or have had a stroke can have more complications if their periodontal disease isn’t treated early. It has to do with inflammation and our body’s reaction to it.
Chronic conditions are exceptionally taxing on our systems, and periodontal disease is a chronic inflammatory disease.
Dental practices have an unprecedented opportunity to step up and treat the whole patient. By providing excellent dental care, dental practitioners may be adding years to their patients’ lives. Don’t miss this opportunity! For more
information, contact me at Advanced Hygiene Concepts at 800.400.6772.
Dental Practice Offers Free Toothprints for Kids’ Safety
No one really likes thinking about child abduction, but it does happen. Residents of the St. Louis area were forced to think about it recently when two kidnapped teens were rescued from captivity. The ensuing publicity has inspired
one southern Illinois dental practice to offer free “toothprints” for children.
The toothprints only take about a minute to make, requiring patients to bite down on a heated plastic flat that keeps a permanent impression of the teeth. In addition to providing a dental record, DNA from saliva is also encased in the
toothprint. Parents can keep their children’s toothprints in a safe location in case of emergency. Dentists generally recommend that toothprints be made around ages 3, 7 and 12.
The Dental Group of Carbondale has scheduled one evening when parents can bring their children in for free toothprints. In what other ways can dental practices reach out to their communities?
Survey: Three Out of Four Dentists Would Prefer Hilary Clinton to Nancy Pelosi
In The Wealthy Dentist’s weekly poll, we recently asked: Which woman would be a better presidential candidate for the Democratic party?
The results were clear! Less than a quarter of our respondents replied, “Nancy Pelosi: Let’s take those San Francisco values all the way to the White House.” In contrast, over three-fourths chose “Hilary Clinton: She’s basically had eight years of experience as President, right?”
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