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Communicating and Relating with Patients

Posted on December 9, 2014 by Sandy Pardue

The following are important guidelines when dealing with patients.

  • Patients’ needs are NUMBER ONE in importance! You must leave your personal problems and troubles outside the office. Patients come to the office to improve their oral health and to get out of pain. An atmosphere of warmth, cheerfulness, and caring must be conveyed. Indifference to patients’ problems will not contribute to the atmosphere.
  • REMEMBER PATIENTS’ NAMES and use them often when talking with the patients. Refer to the patient as “Mr.,” “Mrs.,” “Miss.,” “Ms.,” or “Dr. ,” unless the patient invites you to call him/her by their first name. Do not give patients nicknames or refer to them as “Hun,” “Darlin,” “Sweetie,” or other pet names.
  • Your communication with patients must be in keeping with the practice policy and the Doctor’s image. When talking to patients regarding their dental health and progress, be reassuring and tell them they have the very best dentist and they are in good hands.
  • Relay both positive and negative comments to the Doctor. This enables him/her to communicate better with patients, answer questions and avoid misunderstandings.
  • Encourage patients to follow the Doctor’s instructions and recommendations. Non-treating personnel should never make personal recommendations or a diagnosis concerning patients’ problems, causes and treatment.


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Classic Practice Resources, Inc. is designated as an Approved PACE Program Provider by the Academy of General Dentistry. The formal continuing education programs of this program provider are accepted by the AGD for Fellowship/Mastership and membership maintenance credit. Approval does not imply acceptance by a state or provincial board of dentistry or AGD endorsement. The current term of approval extends from January 1, 2022 – December 31, 2025. Provider ID# 208192

ADA CERP is a service of American Dental Association to assist dental professionals in identifying quality providers of continuing dental education. ADA CERP does not approve or endorse individual courses or instructors, nor does it imply acceptance of credit hours by boards of dentistry. Classic Practice Resources, Inc. designates this activity for 8 hours continuing education credits.

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