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Top Five Reasons You Have A Lackluster Perio Dept

By May 16, 2019February 13th, 2020Madow Blog
dental hygienist performing hygiene procedure on patient's gums
If you think your hygiene department could use a little “oomph,” you are not alone. After all, the majority of the adult population in North America has some level of periodontal disease. So if most of your patients are just getting “cleanings,” you are not only missing a huge production opportunity, you are not giving your patients the care they deserve. (And no – you do NOT practice in an area where people don’t have perio disease. We are sick of hearing that one….) You should be and can be doing more scaling and root planing procedures in your practice! So let’s find out why you’re not.

Top Five Reasons Your Patients Don’t Get Scaling and Root Planing

5. It was never properly explained to them

Many patients cannot get past calling this a “deep cleaning,” and that is often our fault for dumbing down the explanation. We need to let them know that they have an infection that could eat away the bone that holds in their teeth if not properly treated. Also, don’t forget to tell them that scaling and root planing is a conservative, non-surgical approach, and not treating the problem could lead to a referral for surgery.

4. “My last dentist never told me I needed this!”

This phrase makes us shudder as we back off lest we sound like snake-oil salesmen. Don’t.

The best way to respond to something like this is by saying… “Well, I can’t tell you what your last dentist saw, but our examination today definitely shows inflammation, infection and bleeding in your gums. The latest research shows this can not only lead to tooth loss, but it is linked to diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.” Resist the urge to tell them their last dentist was a moron who didn’t own a perio probe.

3. Yikes!

Many patients perceive scaling and root planing as a boatload of injections followed by sharp instruments reaching their toes. We need to reassure them their comfort is our number one goal!

2. Fee resistance / insurance issues

Again, this comes from the patient’s perception that this procedure is a glorified cleaning. Carefully explain to your patients (in terms they understand) what you will be doing and why. It’s not a “deep cleaning” because they are “overdue and have a bunch of tartar!”

Avoid sticker shock by having insurance estimates and payment information ready to discuss. Use CareCredit and let the patient know that their payment will be “just $245 per month – interest free!”

And unfortunately, based on our visits to hundreds of offices across the country, we can confidently say that the number one reason patients don’t get scaling and root planing performed is……


Did you hear that? Maybe it bears repeating….


Get that perio probe out of the drawer, dust it off, and use it on every single exam. Full charting, appropriate radiographs, and a complete perio exam – do your patients deserve any less?

Get moving on this – NOW! Save some teeth and add to your income!

Talk to you soon,

The Madow Brothers

P.S. If you have any questions, always feel free to call us at 1-800-258-0060.

P.S. #2: Want to learn more about growing your practice, increasing your income and enjoying dentistry more with Madow Success Coaching? Click here to attend our upcoming Masterclass For Dentists

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Meet the Madow Brothers

Dr. Dave & Dr. Rich Madow

Dr. David Madow

Influencer, Speaker, Author & Coach at The David Madow Lifestyle Show + Co-founder of The Madow Center for Dental Practice Success.

Dr. Richard Madow

The Madow Brothers

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