I have been honored for almost a decade, now, to be the monthly Ask The Expert columnist for oral and dental health, and with the arrival of this dental issue, I cannot help but reflect on the numerous and diverse topics I have had the opportunity to share with all of my loyal readers. From dental lasers and digital smiles to implants and Invisalign, dentistry is full of technology, techniques, and treatment that provide not only healthy, beautiful smiles but also benefit or remedy many systemic conditions. At the end of the day, when I attempt to sum up the value of dental care, to me it all centers on two themes: service and relationships.
It is imperative for healthcare providers to recognize themselves as service providers, first. Not only does a service-centered focus contribute to quality care, but it encourages the provider to remain consistently motivated toward the education and practice of new and better techniques and treatment. Giving patients the best care emboldens dental providers to invest in and acquire the latest or upcoming technologies that continue to develop safer, more convenient, and more comfortable care. In addition, remaining in touch with the latest available research, especially within interdisciplinary studies, helps guide treatment to promote overall health.
Service and relationships go hand in hand. I cannot begin to express the gratitude I have for all the many relationships I have embraced as a dental provider over the past several years. Building a bond between provider and patient allows a deeper understanding of the type of care that is both needed and desired. It goes without saying that mutual trust only adds to the process and outcome of care.
The reality is dental care is usually something that is experienced only every now and again. Regardless, when that moment arrives, a service-oriented and altruistic provider combined with a mutual consideration between patient and provider paves the way for a harmonious and even fun experience. Together you and your dentist can produce smiles that last a lifetime. Happy smiling!
Dr. Matthew Artho is owner and dentist of Country Lakes Family Dental in Bartonville, TX, and nine-time winner of Best of Denton County countrylakesdental.com