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Do You Tell Your Patients Stories?

Growing your Dental Practice with these Communication Tips

Nov 22, 2023

Michael Sonick DMD

Have you ever thought about how sharing a personal story can transform a patient's experience in a dental chair? As a dentist, my day-to-day interactions aren't limited to teeth; they're deeply rooted in the stories of the individuals who own them. My journey in realizing this began with a childhood incident that I frequently recount to my patients.

At the age of eight, I experienced a traumatic bicycle accident that resulted in losing my front teeth. This event was not just physically painful but also emotionally scarring. When I share this story with my patients, it does something remarkable. It allows me to demonstrate empathy, show vulnerability, and most importantly, build trust.

Why is trust so vital in a patient-doctor relationship? It's simple. Trust encourages patients to understand and embrace the treatments that are in their best interest. Trust is the cornerstone of any patient-doctor relationship. While cold facts and figures often fail to make an impact, a story can touch the heart.

Our emotional responses are largely governed by the amygdala, a part of our brain that processes emotions. Sharing personal experiences engages this part of the brain, fostering a connection that transcends clinical procedures.

In my practice, I've found that when patients feel understood and related to, they're more relaxed and cooperative. My bicycle accident story isn't just a tale of a mishap; it's a tool that helps me connect with my patients on a deeper level. It shows them that I'm not just a dentist, but also a human being who has faced challenges and understands pain and fear.

Treating People Not Patients
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Sample a lesson from our popular course Treating People Not Patients where we provide practical Insights on Hospitality and Human Connection to Provide High Quality Care Experiences for People and Practitioners

Treating People Not Patients
Free Preview

Sample a lesson from our popular course Treating People Not Patients where we provide practical Insights on Hospitality and Human Connection to Provide High Quality Care Experiences for People and Practitioners