How many times has this happened to you? You do a thorough examination on Mrs. Jones, taking a full set of X-rays. You work up a well thought out treatment plan that will restore her mouth to health and function. You take 30 to 45 minutes out of your busy schedule to treatment plan and educate her about the restorations you will use to fix the problems. She smiles and says, ”Okay, I’ll think about it.”
Why did she say this? Why doesn’t she immediately want the treatment? Doesn’t she know how important it is? Doesn’t she know what an excellent dentist you are? What could you and your team have done differently to get a positive response?
The first thing you should realize is that most patients don’t make decisions about their dental treatment based on education. I know this is not what you’ve been taught in dental school or CE courses, but it’s true. Education does not inspire most patients to want to do their dental treatment.
People will always find a way to do what they want, but not necessarily what they need. I’m sure you’ve had this happen 100 times. You educate your patient about some dental treatment he or she needs and you hear, “I need to talk to my husband first,” or “I’ll check my schedule and get back with you.” These statements really mean, ”I may need it, but I don’t want it.”
The reason education kills case acceptance is because patients decide to do dental treatment based on emotion, not education or intellect. In fact, most buying decisions are emotionally based.