Shift Case Acceptance Odds in Your Favor

Struggling to move your desired amount of dental work off the charts and increase your case acceptance? Usually, the issue isn’t that not enough of your patients need treatment, it’s that they have been ineffectively diagnosed or haven’t accepted procedures for a multitude of reasons.

I’m here to show you three painless methods that will get more patients to say ‘yes’ so you can provide the best care possible.

3 Case Acceptance Methods to Increase the Odds

1. Emphasize a Patient’s Wants Over Needs

Focus on helping patients want better dentistry and a more complete solution. Humans inherently spend money on their wants over their needs. Americans spend much more on alcohol, tobacco, and gambling than on dentistry. Help transform their perspective of dentistry from a necessary evil to a desirable solution. Be patient. Allow them the space to understand the consequences of inaction. At some point, they will “want” to know a solution.

2. Develop Curiosity Over Passivity

Ask about the problem and stay in the question. Many patients will begin to come to their own conclusions if we develop their curiosity. Let them co-discover and view things using the intraoral camera or hand mirror. This gives them the chance to really learn about their mouth. Telling them what you see is passive education. Helping them figure it out is more active and creates ownership. Avoid discussing solutions or talking about problems excessively unless they ask.

3. Help Patients Take Ownership

Here’s the honest truth: Patients are not aware, concerned, or interested in the long term consequences of not seeking treatment. They mistakenly believe that having no pain or dysfunction equates to health. If all we do is give them an exam, develop a treatment plan, and tell them what they need, we will fail to convey the value of a procedure to their life. We have to continue to probe by asking questions about the problem and its progression. When they recognize the ultimate untoward outcome, finally taking ownership, we know case acceptance is on the table. A telling sign is when they ask, “what can I do about that?”

How do you increase case acceptance? We’d love to hear from you in the comments!  

Mark Murphy DDS

Mark is the Lead Faculty for Clinical Education at ProSomnus Sleep Technologies, Principal of Funktional Consulting, serves on the Guest Faculty at the University of Detroit Mercy School of Dentistry and is a Regular Presenter on Business Development, Practice Management and Leadership at The Pankey Institute. He has served on the Boards of Directors of The Pankey Institute, National Association of Dental Laboratories, the Identalloy Council, the Foundation for Dental Laboratory Technology, St. Vincent DePaul's Dental Center and the Dental Advisor. He lectures internationally on Leadership, Practice Management, Communication, Case Acceptance, Planning, Occlusion, Sleep and TMD. He has a knack for presenting pertinent information in an entertaining manner. [email protected]

2 thoughts on “Shift Case Acceptance Odds in Your Favor

  • September 2, 2017 at 6:53 pm

    Great post Mark!

  • October 3, 2017 at 10:18 am

    Always good to review the fundamentals.Thanks Mark


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