Can Adults Benefit from Dental Sealants?

If you have kids, you might be familiar with dental sealants. However, many adult dental patients haven’t heard of dental sealants and, even those who have, may not be aware of how sealants can benefit adult patients as well as children. Take a look at what you should know about dental sealants and how they can help protect your teeth. Then talk to your dentist about whether dental sealants are a good choice for you.

 

What Are Dental Sealants? 

Dental sealants are a thin coating of flexible plastic material that cover the chewing surface of a tooth. Dentists apply the sealant in liquid form, simply by brushing it onto the patient’s teeth. After a short time, the liquid dries and hardens and becomes a solid plastic barrier that prevents food and other material from settling in the patient’s teeth.

Dental sealants are usually applied to teeth in the back of the mouth – the molars and premolars that do the bulk of the chewing. These teeth are particularly prone to decay, partly because they come into more contact with food than other teeth. They have grooves that tend to trap small particles of food and they’re harder to reach with a toothbrush than teeth in the front of the mouth. 

 

Dental Sealants for Adults

In recent years, dental sealants have been commonly recommended for children. Children are not as experienced at brushing as adults, and may have a harder time getting their teeth thoroughly cleaned. Sealants help to protect their teeth from developing cavities that may cause them greater dental problems later in life.

Tooth decay can happen to anyone, regardless of age. Although children may be less effective at brushing their teeth, many adults still experience decay even with proper toothbrushing. Adults with weak enamel or with pits and grooves in their teeth may be more prone to decay. What’s more, some factors that can contribute to tooth decay, like certain illnesses or medications, are more likely to affect adults than children. Sealants can help adults preserve their natural teeth and reduce the need for procedures like fillings and crowns.

 

Are Sealants Right For You? 

Having sealants applied is a simple, quick, and painless procedure that is appropriate for most patients. If you’re particularly prone to tooth decay, or if you’re particularly motivated to avoid extra dental work, sealants may be a perfect choice for you.

Remember that sealants don’t last forever – if you want to maintain them, you’ll need to have them reapplied every ten years. However, the cost of having sealants applied is low compared to the cost of restorative dental work. Opting for sealants could save you a lot of money in dental work in the future. It can also spare you the pain and inconvenience of toothaches and infections that can accompany tooth decay.

If you’re looking for new and better ways to protect your teeth, talk to your dentist about dental sealants. Contact us to request information.

What to Expect if You’re Getting Tooth Veneers

If your smile isn’t as bright or even as you might like, cosmetic dentistry offers a variety of options that can help you correct the problems with your teeth. For patients with healthy teeth who want to make their teeth more attractive, dental veneers are a popular choice. Veneers are thin, tooth-shaped shells that are applied over the top of your teeth to give them a uniform appearance. They can be used to disguise several cosmetic problems at once, like dull, stained teeth, uneven or oddly-shaped teeth, or chipped and cracked teeth. If you’re considering dental veneers, here’s what you can expect during the process.

Cosmetic dentistry
What shade should your teeth be? Your dentist can help you choose. 

 

Making a Treatment Plan

Before you can hop in the dentist’s chair and have veneers applied to your teeth, your dentist will want to create a treatment plan that makes sense for you. Your dentist will give you a checkup, and possibly perform x-rays, to determine whether veneers are a good choice for you. If your dentist finds unhealthy teeth or gums, you may need treatment for those conditions before getting veneers.

You’ll also need to make some decisions about what your veneers are going to look like. Your dentist will take impressions of your teeth so that the veneers can be made to fit them precisely. You’ll choose the color of your teeth from a range of shades. If you’re happy with the color of your teeth and want veneers to cover other flaws, you can choose veneers that match your natural tooth shade. However, you may also choose a brighter shade of white, if you prefer.

 

Preparing Your Teeth

Dental veneers usually can’t be placed directly over your teeth. In order for the veneer to fit, some of the enamel on your natural teeth will need to be removed. Remember that once removed, enamel can’t regrow or be replaced. For this reason, veneers are considered a permanent alteration. If one of your veneers is damaged or falls off, you can’t just have them all removed and go back to your natural teeth – you’ll need to maintain, repair, and replace the veneers as needed.

How much of your tooth enamel needs to be removed depends on what condition your current teeth are in and what type of veneers you get. Porcelain veneers require more enamel to be removed than minimal-prep veneers. Also, if your tooth is very dark, more enamel may need to be removed in order to make a veneer thick enough to block out the dark color with the lighter colored veneer.

 

Applying the Veneers

Cosmetic dentistry
Veneers can help you achieve the perfect smile.

Minimal-prep veneers, also called instant veneers, can usually be applied on the same day that the enamel is removed. For other types of veneers, you’ll most likely have to come back for a second appointment. Your dentist may give you temporary veneers in that case.

Before affixing the veneer in place, your dentist will repeatedly place and remove the veneer on your teeth in order to make sure that the fit is correct and the placement is straight. Your dentist may need to make adjustments to the veneer by trimming it. A tooth-colored cement will be used to bond the veneer to your tooth when it’s ready for permanent placement.

Do you want to improve your smile and think that veneers might be right for you? We can help. Contact us to request information.

Expert Interview Series: Shaun Buck of thenewsletterpro.com on How Dental Practices Can Use Newsletters

Print media

Shaun Buck is the CEO and owner of The Newsletter Pro where he drives innovation in the print media space and helps his clients build their business from $1 million to 10 million and beyond.

 

You’ve always wanted to be an entrepreneur, from an early age. You went from owning a hot dog stand to a dry cleaning business to operating a newsletter business/service, all in the span of a few years. How did that come about? What made you want to pursue writing newsletters as a business?

I started very early in life, because I had a kid at 16 years old. So instead of going to college and trying to figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up, I bought and sold businesses. I ended up buying and selling seven or eight businesses. One of the businesses I bought was a dry-cleaning pick-up and delivery service. That was a franchise, and as part of the franchise, I had to put out a newsletter each month. I ended up publishing the world’s worst newsletter for two years.

After two years of getting no results because I published the world’s most boring newsletter, I finally decided to figure out how to get this newsletter thing to work. After a little trial and error, all of a sudden, I started to get more referrals, and customers started talking to me about items that appeared in the newsletter. In 2011, I was looking to get back into the marketing business, and figured if getting a newsletter out was so difficult for me, despite the fact I knew all the benefits of a good print newsletter, it must be difficult for others as well — and that was the start of The Newsletter Pro.

 

You’ve talked about publishing “the world’s worst newsletter,” for two years. Why was it the world’s worst newsletter, in your opinion? What did you learn, during that process, that you wished you would’ve known starting out?

It was the world’s worst newsletter because it was boring. We’d talk about dry cleaning and how to get out grass stains or deodorant residue. When you think about it, those problems were what our dry cleaning customers were paying us to solve; they didn’t care about how to get out grass stains. Another huge mistake I made was not being consistent in mailing the newsletter. I’d sometimes skip a month, even though I was required by the franchiser to send one out. We’ve found this can be one of those sins that kills the effectiveness of a newsletter campaign.

 

You started to find your way over the course of writing your newsletter, resulting in much more engagement and higher readership. What were some of the changes you made, and why do you think they were so successful and popular with your readers?

The first change we made was by starting to put a personal article on the cover. This article was always something about my family and me. In the article I’d open up about what was going on in our lives. The next thing we did was remove all talk of dry cleaning except 20–25 percent of business-specific info that was necessary to improve the business and the customer experience. We also added some good local articles that would talk about what was going on in the community. The last thing we did was made sure we mailed each and every month, without fail. When we combined all of this, we saw a massive increase in the number of referrals, customer retention, up-sells, etc.

 

You started writing newsletters in 2002, before the Internet was as prevalent as it is today. Are physical newsletters still as important, in today’s digital marketing climate and, if so, what are some reasons for their usefulness?

With the average competition in your mailbox at an all-time low, and the average competition in your inbox at an all-time high, offline marketing is even more important than ever before. One major reason physical newsletters work so much better is that tangible items change the emotional feel for the reader. Think about it: Do you have any issues deleting an email without even looking at it? Of course not. But all physical mail at least gets looked at before it’s trashed, and according to the USPS, the average newsletter actually lingers around a home or office for up to 4 months before it is thrown away. Compare that to the average email, which has an 8-second lifespan, and I’ll take offline physical marketing any day of the week for relationship building.

 

With so many different forms of marketing available, are newsletters still as important and useful as they use to be? If so, why?

With all the digital marketing going on, newsletters are actually more relevant than ever before. We are being bombarded online with advertising. Every fifth Facebook post is an ad, Google’s top 3–6 results are ads, most websites have banner ads, and emails have so many ads that both Google and Outlook have had to create promotion tabs to filter out all of the ads. People are fed up with being bombarded with digital ads online at every turn. Now let’s think about the physical mailbox. With so many thinking that email is free advertising, they have abandoned physical mail, leaving an opportunity for sophisticated marketers to take advantage of the limited competition in the mailbox and increase profits.

 

Dental practices have a built-in mailing list, using their customer’s info, but a lot of times, unsolicited advertisements go straight in the recycling. What are some ways that a dental practice can make their newsletter stand out, so customers actually look forward to and use them?

If you want any ad to not be ignored, you have to follow a few simple rules.

The list is king: You need to target your message to the list you’re mailing to. For example, if I send an ad for $1,000 off a Louis Vuitton bag to unattached men who make $22,000 per year, regardless of how great of an offer that is, I’m going to get zero responses (or close to it). Why? Because that is the wrong audience. Targeting your list is marketing 101 for both online and offline advertising.

The offer: I see dental offices make some really horrible offers — like a free exam, when the competitors offer a free exam and X-rays. I’ve even seen $5.00 off fluoride … really? Fluoride is likely the highest-margin product at a dental office, and you want to give $5.00 off. I could go on, but these are just horrible offers, and no one is going to respond to them — regardless of the media you use.

Don’t be boring, don’t be cute: I watch people make these mistakes all the time. When they write a newsletter, they are simply boring. No one has time for boring. No one wants to read all about dentistry. Or they try to be cute with their advertising. Cute often doesn’t translate, and in turn hurts the messaging and the advertisement.

 

For dentists, dental practices, and dental marketers, why do they need to have a newsletter as part of their marketing arsenal?

There are dental offices on every corner in America. We all joke that Starbucks is everywhere, but in the U.S., there are 16 dental offices for each Starbucks. Dental offices really are everywhere. Because of all the competition, you need to make sure you jealously guard your patients and keep them safe from poachers (i.e., all the other dentists in your area). Increasing retention starts with relationships, and a newsletter is a perfect way to build a relationship with a large group of patients. Also, when you have a newsletter, you now own media — this media is something you control and can’t be banned for. You have control over the message and offers. With your own media, you can promote your offers, events, and referral promotions, just to name a few ideas. Having a print newsletter — for any professional — is more important now than it has ever been.

 

Do you have any advice on some kinds of content that might for interesting reading in a dental newsletter?

The type of content really depends on the goals of the newsletter and who is going to read it. For example, if your target market is a 35-year-old mom, you need to create content that will appeal to that mom.

 

Unsolicited outbound marketing, like circular ads, are increasingly unpopular, seeming bland, impersonal, and ineffectual. What are some ways that a dental practice can personalize their newsletters towards their particular customers, to ensure customer loyalty?

The best way to personalize a newsletter is to write about local activities as well as to have the doctor write about what is going on in his/her world. These personal articles are so important, and are really the secret to developing a relationship with patients. It’s one of the magic components to getting a newsletter to work for any business.

 

What are some ways that a dental practice might integrate direct mail with other marketing efforts, like blogging or social media? How can all these networks together effectively, for the best possible dental marketing campaign?

A multimedia campaign is always the best way to market. Instead of thinking of each marketing medium as a silo, start thinking about them as team members who all need to work together to win the game. If you are promoting a referral contest, it needs to be pushed with all the media you have. Newsletters, Facebook, postcards, re-targeting ads, in-office promos, content marketing — it should all work together. When all your marketing is working together, the results tend to increase exponentially over any single marketing campaign trying to do all the heavy lifting on its own.

Want to learn more ways to grow your dental practice? Request information today!

 

The Truth About Career Success And Your Teeth

dentistrySmiles are contagious. When you smile, someone else smiles, or when they smile at you, it’s hard not to smile back. They improve the mood, set people at ease.

But do they impact your career?
According to statistics, nearly three-quarters of adults (74%) feel that an unattractive smile can or will hurt their career success. Is there any truth to that? There’s no information that states that there’s a correlation between smiling and income or smiling and job position, so the results are likely in the negative.

But what about social standing? According to a survey by the AACD(American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry), virtually all adults (99.7%) surveyed believed a healthy smile is socially important.

This might actually hold some truth.
As stated before, smiling is a great way to put people at ease and improve moods. It helps ease the social process. A healthy smile working even better? Not so far-fetched.

Appearance plays a large part of your impression on people, especially the first. Over half of your impression is based on your appearance. What clothes you’re wearing, your hair, your shoes, and if you’re clean and smell well.

Having clean, bright, well-kept teeth might mean the difference in making a good impression on a future employer or a business partner. And the difference between a promotion, job position, or a big sale.

Knowing that, is it any wonder that Americans, a largely career based group of people, spend so much time and money going to the dentist? Over 68% of Americans visit the dentist every year, at least once. Dentistry and the appearance of their teeth are important to Americans.

Dental implants are another options that most people are willing to get, especially if it’s in the front of their mouth. Somewhere around 3 million American’s have dental implants, and that number grows by 500,000 every year. That’s a massive number of people paying a lot of money to cosmetically fix their smiles.

And who could blame them? If 50% of your impression on someone is appearance, you want that appearance to be the very best that it can be. Especially in a world where you could be working for the next hand that you shake.

If you have any thoughts about cosmetic dentistry we’d be interested in hearing them! Leave them in the comments below!

What to Expect During a Root Canal

If there are any two words of dental terminology that can strike fear into the heart of a patient, those words are “root canal.” But should you really be scared of root canal treatments? The fact is, dental technology, and root canal procedures specifically, have come a long way in recent years. Today, a root canal may not be as painful as you think. As a matter of fact, a root canal is often the best way to put a stop to pain that you’re already experiencing. Here are a few things that you should know about having a root canal.

 

Why Do You Need a Root Canal?

Dental care
Root canals involve cleaning out infected pulp located deep in your tooth.

Dentists don’t recommend the root canal procedure without a good reason. If your dentist suggests a root canal, it means that you have an injury to the tooth root or a deep cavity that affects the tooth root and that injured area or cavity has become inflamed or infected. Often, this creates intense pain for the patient. A root canal is a way of stopping the pain and preventing it from reoccurring without losing the tooth entirely.

While tooth extraction is sometimes suggested as an alternative to a root canal, it’s an inferior option. Most dentists recommend that you save the natural tooth if at all possible, and a root canal does that. This can prevent some of the side effects that can go along with tooth loss, like difficulty eating, tooth misalignment, and an increased chance of decay. A root canal is also often the cheaper option – if you have a tooth extracted instead, you’ll then need to pay for a tooth replacement.

 

What Happens During a Root Canal?

During the root canal procedure, your dentist will make a hole in the crown of your tooth that allows them to access the pulp chambers deep inside the tooth root. Your dentist will then use special files to clean out all of the infected material and damaged pulp, which is what has been causing your tooth pain. With the infected matter gone, you’ll notice a quick improvement in your toothache.

Once the pulp is removed, your dentist will fill the empty tooth canals with a filler material known as gutta-percha. Your dentist will then seal up the tooth with a temporary seal. In a subsequent appointment, this temporary seal will be replaced with a crown.

 

What About Pain Relief?

Dental care
A root canal can be the treatment that gives you back the freedom to enjoy life without tooth pain.

Your dentist will numb your tooth before beginning the root canal work. For most patients, a root canal performed with current tools and technology is no more painful than a filling, and a numbing agent is enough to get you through the procedure without any pain.

In some cases, another type of anesthetic may be used as well. For example, if you have a particularly painful infection or if you’re especially nervous about the procedure, your dentist may use an oral sedative or provide you with anti-anxiety medications before the procedure to ensure that you don’t feel pain.

Don’t be afraid of having a root canal done. A safe and effective root canal procedure can spare you a lot of pain from the infections and inflammation that can come with tooth root damage. If you’re experiencing tooth pain, call us to make an appointment.

A Smile Makeover is Different For Everyone

If you could change anything about your smile, what would it be? The odds are that your answer is different from your friend’s or neighbor’s answer. Everyone’s smile is different, and everyone has their own flaws that they would like to improve. That’s why a smile makeover offered by your dentist is different depending on your needs. Here are some of the things that could be included in a smile makeover.

 

Brighten Your Pearly Whites

Cosmetic dentistry
Yellow stains on your teeth don’t have to be permanent.

A common problem that dental patients have is that they feel their teeth aren’t white enough. Smokers, for instance, will notice that their teeth turn yellowish over time because of the frequent exposure to tobacco smoke.

But you don’t have to be a smoker to notice stains and discolorations on your teeth. Other common culprits of tooth stains include coffee, tea, wine, and dark berries, like blueberries or blackberries. Some medications can also cause teeth to darken or leave stains behind.

If you’ve noticed that your teeth aren’t as white as you’d like, your smile makeover should include tooth whitening treatments. Your dentist will use a gel that contains a whitening agent on your teeth in order to restore them to their former brightness and get rid of any stains. Your dentist may use laser lights to enhance the whitening effect and give you brighter teeth faster.

 

Smooth Out Uneven or Chipped Teeth

It’s easy to accidentally chip your teeth – sometimes all it takes is unintentionally hitting your teeth with your drinking glass, or biting into something that’s hard or sticky. Very small chips may not require fillings, but they can leave your smile looking less than impressive.

Some people have uneven teeth. They may be perfectly healthy, but they’re oddly shaped and don’t match the teeth around them very well.

If you have chipped or uneven teeth, your dentist may suggest veneers. The process of applying veneers involves removing a thin layer of enamel from your teeth and placing thin, tooth colored coverings over them, sort of like a false front for your teeth. A set of veneers can quickly transform your teeth from uneven and chipped to perfectly straight and flawless.

 

Straighten Your Smile

Cosmetic dentistry
Straightening your teeth can improve more than just the look of your smile. It can also make your mouth healthier.

Another dental problem is crooked or misaligned teeth. While this is a cosmetic problem, it can also be more than that – if your teeth are too crooked, you may have difficulty biting down properly, or you may experience pain in your head, neck, or jaw. What’s more, crooked teeth are more likely to suffer from decay and cavities. If your teeth aren’t straight, you may have overlaps that make it difficult or impossible to clean properly between all of your teeth, and cavities may result.

Your dentist can solve the problem of crooked teeth with orthodontic work. The most common treatment is dental braces. These can be traditional metal braces or the invisible braces that are removable and made from a translucent material. Your dentist can help you figure out which type of braces are best for your teeth.

Of course, it’s possible to have more than one tooth problem that you’d like to have fixed. Your dentist can tailor your smile makeover to your needs, and that may include several different treatments for different problems. If you’re interested in a smile makeover, contact us to request information.

3 Ways to Keep Your Teeth Healthy and Strong

cosmetic dentistCavities can ruin the appearance of your teeth and lead to even more severe dental issues down the line. That’s why it’s so important to properly take care of your teeth throughout your entire life.

What are cavities?
Cavities are holes in the enamel and the dentin, which are the two most outer layers of a tooth. These layers serve to protect the teeth, as well as the blood vessels and nerves within. These cavities, ranging from minor to extremely painful and severe, are common in the United States.

At least one in five Americans have one or more untreated cavities. Sadly, the poorer the individual, the more likely they are to be one of the untreated 20%.

How can I keep my teeth healthy and strong for many years?

  1. Regular visits to your dentist
    If you ignore your teeth for too long, you’re going to end up having serious problems that will not only hurt but will end up costing you a lot of money as well. Cosmetic dentistry and family dentistry can help significantly improve the look and well-being of your teeth. If you need dental implants, veneers, or tooth whitening, a cosmetic dentist will be able to provide those services. For fillings, extractions, and checkups, make sure that you schedule regular appointments to visit your family dentist.
  2. Proper oral hygiene
    You have to make sure that you’re taking excellent care of your teeth throughout your entire life. Just because you hated brushing your teeth when you were a kid doesn’t mean you can get away with it in your adult years. You have to stay on top of your oral health every single day. That means brushing your teeth in the morning and at night (sometimes even more than that), flossing in between meals, and being careful about how you’re treating your teeth.
  3. Cutting back on snacks and sugary drinks
    Part of growing up and keeping your teeth strong means cutting back on the unhealthy snacks that you used to enjoy. One of the easiest ways to ruin your teeth is to drink sugary drinks and eat unhealthy foods on a consistent basis. Stop damaging your mouth with these sugary products and take better care of your teeth.

If you are ready to improve your smile and want to get your teeth healthy and strong again, contact Watkin Dental Associates today.

Expert Interview Series: Charles Crawford of Crawford & O’ Brien on Digital Marketing Tips For Dentists

Charles Crawford is the co-founder of Crawford and O’Brien, an international digital agency.

 

Crawford And O’Brien is a “revenue-focused digital marketing agency that helps dentists attract new patients with proven results,” according to your bio. To start, can you talk a bit about what it means to be a revenue-focused digital marketing agency, and why that’s important in today’s digital marketing environment?

Yes! Too many agencies focus on impressions or clicks or branding. We focus on how much profit we actually generate our clients, and that’s our main KPI, not just clicks or calls. Thus, it’s more of a matter of focus and what we care about as the main KPI.

 

Along those lines, can you give us some examples of “proven results”? What are some methods you’d recommend for proving the success of a dental digital marketing strategy’s ROI, for investors, shareholders, and business owners?

Yes, if you look at our portfolio page, you’ll see a lot of clients – you can just search their city name + dentist or lookup their site on a tool like semrush.com to see their traffic. Basically, one of the best metrics we can show our clients is appointments booked. We use dynamic call tracking, and we send a list of appointments that were generated from our marketing efforts to the client every month so they can analyze those appointments to figure out which leads turned into new cases for the practice.

 

Crawford And O’Brien have talked about not believing “in lock-in contracts,” instead favoring transparency. What are some reasons why transparency in marketing is so important, both for dental clients as well as dentists themselves?

Unfortunately there’s a lot of shady agencies that lock clients into 2-year contracts because they know that they probably wont’ get the client amazing results, and they want to collect their revenue no matter what. We do monthly agreements because it forces us to EARN the clients business every month – because if we don’t they can cancel services. Fortunately, because our results tend to be stellar, our client retention is incredibly high.

 

Crawford And O’Brien are known to double your clients’ new patients in 6 months or less. What are some particularly useful digital marketing methods for attracting new dental patients that you’d recommend?

Definitely make sure your SEO is solid. If you’re not ranking top 3 in the maps and organic section of Google for at least 20+ money-making keywords that your customers are searching then you’re leaving money on the table. SEO has the highest potential ROI of almost any internet marketing strategy – especially for local businesses. When people need something, what do they do? They google the solution. You need to be positioned as the top solution to their problem. In addition to SEO, I’d also recommend PPC. Google Adwords and Facebook ads are incredibly profitable if they are setup properly. All you need is someone that can execute properly. Don’t do this stuff yourself, it’s too complex, and that’s one of the biggest mistakes I see – dentists or office managers trying to do their own internet marketing.

 

One of the main services Crawford And O’Brien offer is SEO services for dental practices. How important is SEO, in today’s digital marketing strategies? What are a few particularly useful keywords or phrases you’d recommend a dental practice try to rank in?

SEO is vital, it’s not just important. Without it, you could literally be leaving millions of dollars on the table every year in missed revenue. Some great keywords are “dentist near me” “dental implants cost” “best dentist in (your city)”. With the rise of mobile, most of your traffic will be mobile – in fact, for some clients, 80% of their traffic is mobile.

 

You also offer PPC advertising services. PPC is most effective when targeting a very specific audience. Can you talk a bit about how a dental practice might use their other marketing channels, like sales funnels and landing pages, to find the most effective PPC keywords, and what difference that can make?

Yes! There’s a big difference between Google Adwords (bidding for keywords to show your ad on top of Google for that keyword) and Facebook (showing ads to people on their Facebook newsfeed based on their demographic data). Adwords is great to buy keywords like “emergency dentist near me” or “dental implants cost” and send that traffic to specifically built landing pages for those services. So if someone searches “dental implants cost” they will go to a specific landing page that’s only talking about implants, the cost of implants, the benefits of implants etc. Then for Facebook ads, you should be sending traffic to either content or another specific landing page. I’d recommend selling an at-home teeth whitening kit at your office for like $150, but offer it at a discount or for free if a new patient signs up for a treatment plan. Then use the teeth whitening offer as a hook to get people to come into your practice.

You can literally show ads to people on Facebook who are “recently engaged in the past 6 months”. Yes, I’m serious! So one thing that is crushing it right now – is showing ads to those girls who recently got engaged, with a Facebook ad of an image of a happily married couple, and her teeth are super white – and the offer is to get a free teeth whitening if you sign up and become a new patient etc. It’s all about getting people in the door and upselling them services once they get in there. Most people don’t really know how bad their teeth are until they get in there and you can show them their problems on an intra oral camera.

 

You not only help practices market their services, but also products, in the case of dental implants. What are some differences between marketing dental services and marketing dental products, like dental implants? What are some principles that remain the same?

Most of the principals stay the same. The difference is just more specificity. So for implants, if someone is searching for dental implants, that means they know something about it. They actually know to search for it. Someone who just searches “dentists in my city” might not know what they really need, other than they are new to the area and needs a new dentist. Someone searching “all on 4 dental implants” is even more specific, and the more specific the better. That’s why in general, it’s better to bid mostly on specific keywords, because you’ll get more bang for your buck.

 

Despite the alarming claim that social media marketing is declining, due to over-saturation and a misunderstanding of how to use it effectively, social media remains a huge part of most people’s lives, especially in the United States. Which social media networks do you recommend dental practices invest time, money, and resources into and why?

Facebook. Just dominate Facebook, and that’s it. You can use Facebook ads to hit everyone in your city if you wanted to because you can geo-target the ads. Plus, you can actually show ads to people on Instagram within the Facebook ads dashboard – thus, you can hit the top 2 social platforms. Anyone who says social media is dead doesn’t know what they are talking about.

 

With the decline of organic reach on major social media networks, like Facebook and Twitter, it’s more important than ever to post at the right time, to make sure it gets seen and it attracts the right people. What are some of the best times to post to social media for dental practices?

The times are mixed depending on your audience – moms are at home more, and they are more of the decision makers when it comes to dental decisions within families. Single guys check Facebook more at night etc, so the timing doesn’t quite matter as much as the medium. Let me explain.

The fact is that most dentists are just having their office manager or generic agency post some random stuff on their Facebook page. That doesn’t do anything though. You might get 10 people to view it, but no clicks. The BEST single medium on Facebook is to pay for ads. That’s it. Period. Buy Facebook ads, but make sure you setup a proper sales funnel with the right landing pages and offers, otherwise, it won’t work and you’ll think Facebook ads don’t work.

 

Content marketing and inbound marketing are hot topics, in an over-saturated world where too many marketers are broadcasting useless, uninteresting, spammy posts. If a dental practice or dentist isn’t yet hosting a blog, do you recommend they do so? If so, why is a blog on a dental practice’s website a good idea?

Yes, blogging is good for SEO…that’s about it though. Don’t expect that many people to read your blog, it’s mostly a tool for posting content so Google can know that you’re keeping your site updated and fresh with new unique content every month. Don’t worry about content marketing and blogging too much if you’re a dentist. If you have a national business or sell products online, then SEO and content marketing changes entirely. Either way though, your agency should handle the blogging, definitely don’t spend time writing blog posts every month if you’re a dentist reading this.

Thanks for having me, happy to answer any more questions if you have any – just reach out on our website crawfordandobrien.com.

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3 FAQs about Custom Mouthguards

If you play a contact sport, you know the importance of proper protective gear. However, one often-overlooked piece of protective gear is a custom mouthguard that protects your teeth and mouth. You may be more familiar with stock mouthguards that you can buy off the shelf in sporting goods stores, but the truth is that custom mouthguards designed by your dentist can provide much more effective protection. Here are some of the answers to frequently asked questions about custom mouthguards.

 

What Makes Custom Mouthguards Superior?

Custom mouthguards
Custom mouthguards are better at absorbing impact because of their precise fit.

The advantage that custom mouthguards have over stock mouthguards is that they’re made to fit the precise dimensions of your mouth. Your dentist will make a mold of your teeth, and the mouthguard will be made from that mold. Unlike stock mouthguards, your custom mouthguard will fit securely over your teeth. It won’t be too loose, so that it moves, or too tight to fit properly.

Custom mouthguards are made from thicker material than stock mouthguards, which means that they can provide greater protection. However, unlike stock mouthguards, they aren’t so bulky that they affect your ability to breath properly while wearing them. Again, this is because of the close fit of custom mouthguards. They can be made of thicker material without blocking air flow because they fit your mouth more precisely – there’s no wasted material in the way.

Custom mouthguards are the only mouthguards that can protect the wearer against traumatic brain injury. The secure fit helps to stabilize the head and neck in the event of a blow to the head, which can reduce the risk of a concussion.

 

How Long Do Custom Mouthguards Last?

Each person is different, but under ideal conditions, a custom mouthguard can last for several years. You will need to take care of your mouthguard, by cleaning it properly and storing it in its case after each use. You should take care not to leave your mouthguard sitting out, especially in areas where it might be exposed to intense heat or cold.

You may need a replacement mouthguard sooner if your dentition changes. Children and teenage athletes, for example, still have growing mouths. As they lose baby teeth, grow in adult teeth, or grow wisdom teeth, the shape of their mouths may change, necessitating a new mouthguard. Adults who have finished growing may be able to make a mouthguard last longer, but may still need a replacement after extensive dental work, for example.

 

Aren’t Custom Mouthguards Expensive?

Custom mouthguards
A properly fitted custom mouthguard can last as long as three years.

A custom mouthguard may be less expensive than you think, so it’s important to discuss payment plans and options with your dentist before making a decision. Although you will most likely pay more up front for a custom mouthguard than you would for a stock mouthguard, there’s a good chance that the custom mouthguard will actually be less expensive over time.

Because stock mouthguards are made of thinner and less durable material, they often don’t last as long. Also, you’re more likely to chew on and even bite through a poorly fitting mouthguard. You may go through several stock mouthguards in just one season. A long-lasting custom mouthguard is a better deal in the long run. And of course, if your custom mouthguard protects you from needing expensive dental work, it will more than pay for itself.

If you’re interested in finding out more about custom mouthguards, your dentist can help. Contact us to request information.

Debunking 3 Common Tooth Whitening Myths

Are your teeth not as bright and white as they should be? Even if your teeth are healthy, there are a lot of reasons why they might appear yellowed. Often, it comes down to what you eat and drink. Certain foods and beverages, like blackberries or coffee, can leave stains on your teeth. Teeth also tend to darken with age. If you smoke or use tobacco products, your teeth may develop yellow or brown stains. And certain medications can also cause stains. Fortunately, you can restore your bright smile with tooth whitening treatments. Many people have misconceptions about tooth whitening treatments, so take a look at the truth behind some tooth whitening myths so that you can make an informed decision.

 

Myth: You Can Brush the Stains Away

Cosmetic dentistry
Tooth brushing is vital to a beautiful smile, but it’s not a substitute for whitening treatments.

Yes, you can buy whitening toothpaste, and it’s less expensive than having a whitening treatment done at the dentist’s office. However, it may not be strong enough to remove the stains on your teeth. And even if it does lift some of the surface stains, it won’t actually make your teeth whiter, because it doesn’t contain a bleaching agent. If your concern is that your teeth are less white and bright than they should be overall, whitening toothpaste probably won’t solve the problem.

What’s more, you could actually harm your teeth with ongoing use of whitening toothpaste. These toothpastes contain abrasive materials meant to scrub stains off, but when you scrub your teeth with these abrasives too often, you can break down the protective top layer of tooth material, leading to sensitive teeth.

 

Myth:
Tooth Whitening Is Instant

It’s nice to think about your teeth going from dingy to dazzling in an instant, but most tooth whitening treatments don’t work that way. If you use at-home treatments that you buy over the counter or in-office treatments given to you by your dentist, you’ll need several treatments before you begin to see the results you want.

The exception to the rule is laser whitening treatments, which really can show dramatic results after just one treatment. However, even with laser treatment, if your teeth are particularly stained or dingy, you may need more than one treatment to reach your desired level of whiteness.

 

Myth: Once Your Teeth Are Whitened, They Stay That Way

Cosmetic dentistry
You can keep your teeth white longer by being careful about what you eat and drink.

Tooth whitening treatments can lighten your teeth, but that doesn’t mean that the effect is permanent. Most of the same things that caused your teeth to stain before the treatment will cause staining afterward too. In fact, in the first few days following the treatment, you’ll need to be especially careful about food and drinks that stain, because your teeth will be porous and will easily absorb the staining material.

Once those first few days have passed, you won’t have to be as careful, but you should still keep staining in mind when you choose your meals or consider whether to smoke another cigarette. The effects of tooth whitening can usually last for a year or two. If you keep staining agents to a minimum and clean your teeth carefully, you may be able to extend that time. However, eventually, you may need to have another whitening treatment to retain your preferred level of whiteness.

If you’re interested in tooth whitening treatments, your dentist can tell you whether they’re right for you. Contact us to request information.