Dentists treat patients who complain about sensitive teeth every day, and (as diligently as people may try to avoid them) sugary drinks and candy have become ubiquitous! Given these realities, it's no wonder that fluoride treatments have become so popular. But, before you begin fluoride treatments how should you determine what to use? Is fluoride toothpaste or mouthwash sufficient? Should you use a fluoride varnish? How should you choose which fluoride varnish to use and why? The answers might surprise you.
Fluoride is an important part of a lifetime of good oral health. Not only has the use of fluoride varnish for caries prevention been endorsed by the ADA,1 it also helps treat tooth hypersensitivity to things like hot and cold temperatures or tooth whitening treatments.2
Fluoride is a negatively charged ion that is naturally attracted to the calcium and phosphate ions that make up tooth enamel. Calcium and phosphate ions are susceptible to acid, which leads to caries and decay. Although regular hygiene and brushing can sweep away bacteria, brushing does not address damage already done to the enamel. Introducing fluoride ions to calcium and phosphate strengthens the enamel and can even help to remineralize it.
Many toothpastes and mouthwashes contain fluoride, but the longer fluoride is in contact with the tooth the more effective it is. Using a fluoride varnish will keep fluoride on the teeth for a longer period of time, ensuring that patients get all the benefits a fluoride treatment can offer.
Taste and texture are decisive factors to consider when choosing a fluoride varnish. Your patient's compliance may drop or they may brush the varnish off too soon if it feels gritty or fuzzy, if they don't like the flavor, or if they are embarrassed because of the visible texture of the varnish on their teeth. In fact, a recent survey showed that more than 80% of dental professionals feel that the product's texture on the teeth is an important aspect to consider when choosing a fluoride varnish.3 The more natural a varnish looks and feels, the longer the patient will leave it on their teeth, allowing the varnish to deliver the maximum amount of fluoride ion to every tooth. Enamelast fluoride varnish has a smooth texture and translucent appearance that increase patient comfort and, as a result, probable wear time.
These before-and-after photos of an Enamelast fluoride varnish application show the smooth texture and nearly invisible appearance.
Of course, the effectiveness of a fluoride varnish is incredibly important. Major factors to consider when selecting a fluoride varnish include adhesion, fluoride release, and fluoride uptake. A study found that Enamelast varnish delivered the highest overall amount of fluoride to the patient's teeth and sustained a higher fluoride release over a 24-hour period than its competitors, with peak fluoride release at four hours wear time.
As a whole, the ability of fluoride varnish to adhere to the teeth for an extended period of time is responsible for its rise in popularity among clinicians. In contrast, mouthwashes and gels that contain fluoride are easily washed away, and adhesion and fluoride uptake vary greatly among varnishes currently available on the market. For a fluoride varnish to provide the best results it must adhere to the teeth for the entire recommended time. Thus, the product's adhesive capabilities play a direct role in the varnish's ability to deliver the full benefits of fluoride to the patient. Enamelast varnish features a patented adhesion-promoting agent that enhances retention and allows for higher fluoride uptake than any other fluoride varnish in its class, including the market leader, 3M™ Vanish.™ 6
Lately there has been much discussion in the dental community about varnishes and rapid fluoride release. Much of this is in response to concerns about efficacy and patient comfort. In the video below, Dr. Jaleena Jessop, DDS, (Vice President of Clinical Affairs) joins Carol Jent, RDH, to discuss this trend, explain why rapid release isn’t necessarily desirable, and illustrate why Enamelast varnish is more effective.
Enamelast fluoride varnish's superior adhesion, fluoride release, and fluoride uptake, as well as its great taste, smooth texture, and nearly invisible appearance make it the right choice for you and your patients.
Enamelast varnish comes in two convenient delivery options: unit-dose blister packs, or Ultradent's signature syringe and tip application. The
Enamelast varnish unit-dose blister packs provide an ideal delivery option for clinicians who prefer the convenience of a one-time-use application, or for dental clinics in hospital settings that require the use of unit-dose treatments in which all materials are packaged together. Each blister pack includes a prefilled well and applicator brush, allowing the clinician to dip the brush in the well and paint the varnish on the teeth. Conversely, the syringe delivery method facilitates the ability to express
Enamelast fluoride varnish through Ultradent's SoftEZ™ tip directly onto the teeth for fast application. As opposed to the unit-dose blister packs, each syringe of
Enamelast fluoride varnish provides enough varnish for three to four patients.
Learn more, or shop Enamelast fluoride varnish here!
Ultradent's Enamelast fluoride varnish comes in the delicious flavors of Walterberry™, Bubblegum, Orange Cream, Cool Mint, and Caramel.
*Trademark of a company other than Ultradent.
1. American Dental Association Council on Scientific Affairs. Professionally applied topical fluoride: evidence-based clinical recommendations. J Am Dent Assoc. 2006; 137(8):1151-9. The use described in the text might not be claimed by the FDA.
2. ADA Scientific Panel issues evidence-based clinical recommendations: Patients at elevated risk for developing cavities benefit from applying topical fluoride.
American Dental Association website. Published November 01, 2013.
3. Data on file
4. Schemerhorn BR. Sound enamel fluoride uptake from a fluoride varnish. 2013. Data on file.
5. Due to formula variations actual results may be greater than represented data.
6. Schemerhorn BR. Sound enamel fluoride uptake from a fluoride varnish. 2013. Data on file.
7. American Dental Association Council on Scientific Affairs. Professionally applied topical fluoride: evidence-based clinical recommendations.
J Am Dent Assoc. 2006; 137(8):1151-9.
"It is only with an open hand to give that one has the ability to receive."
-Dr. Dan Fischer, founder and CEO of Ultradent Products, Inc.
40 years in the dental industry, Dr. Dan Fischer, the company's CEO and founder, has made it a point to never forget his grandfather's sage advice that "It is only with an open hand to give that one has the ability to receive." Perhaps this is what influenced the adoption of Care as one of Ultradent's five
Core Values: Integrity, Care, Hard Work, Innovation, and Quality.
Ultradent, care extends far beyond finding a cure for caries, improving oral health globally, or promoting the practice of minimally invasive dentistry throughout the world. In fact, Ultradent and Dr. Fischer's commitment to
caring and giving back has led to quite a few unique and special opportunities to better the world around us, both close to home and abroad. This is also true of Ultradent's flagship, world-renowned tooth whitening brand,
Opalescence™ whitening, which has been the industry leader in professional whitening since its introduction to the market 29 years ago.
Opalescence Whitening Was Created to Improve Lives
Opalescence Whitening has remained the leader in professional tooth whitening for 29 years, and has a strong commitment and legacy of giving back.
The story behind its creation 29 years ago is a personal one for Dr. Fischer. In fact, although
Opalescence whitening has indeed
improved the lives of many in the years since its inception, it was initially created to improve one life—the life of Dr. Fischer's young daughter. As a teenager, she would often express self-consciousness over the shade of her teeth, begging her father to create something that could whiten them. Wanting her to have confidence and take pride in her smile, Dr. Fischer and the team behind
Opalescence whitening created the brand's signature sticky viscous gel. The first night she tried it he instructed her to sleep with the gel on one half of her upper arch with a competitor product on the other half. When she woke up the next morning, Dr. Fischer recalls, "It was one of those 'Wow!' moments to see the difference from one side of her arch to the other. We learned then we needed to scallop the trays so the gel wouldn't migrate, but on the side that the Opalescence whitening gel had been applied she'd gone from an A3 shade to an A1 overnight! From that moment on, my daughter was excited to smile, and I knew this was going to change many other lives like hers for years into the future."
Crown Council's Smiles for Life Foundation
For the past five years, Ultradent and Opalescence whitening have partnered with the Crown Council to support its annual 120-day Smiles for Life Foundation campaign. The campaign encourages patients, through their local dentist, to "whiten their teeth and help a child." During the campaign, approximately 1,000 participating Crown Council dentists throughout the U.S. and Canada donate 100% of the proceeds from any tooth whitening procedure performed in their office toward local charities in their communities throughout the world. Every year, Ultradent donates 100% of the tooth whitening products to participating dentists so that the whitening product costs don't have to come out of their own pockets. In fact, from 2017 to 2018 Ultradent gave approximately $1.5 million worth of whitening products to doctors participating in the Smiles for Life campaign. In addition to tooth whitening, 50% of other procedure costs are donated to a local children's charity chosen by the participating dentist, and the other 50% go to national or worldwide children's charities selected by the Smiles for Life Foundation.
All proceeds from Opalescence whitening procedures through the Smiles for Life Foundation go to underprivileged children throughout the U.S. and Canada.
Crown Council's prestigious alliance of participating dentists (including one who does
extensive work in the Dominican Republic through his foundation,
Bright Island Outreach), combined with its patient-centered approach perfectly aligns with Ultradent's foundational value of caring, patient-centered, minimally invasive dentistry. We are proud and honored to support the incredible work they're doing in the U.S. and throughout the world for children in need.
Ultradent's commitment to the well-being, education, and care of children, along with the philosophy that, according to Dr. Dan Fischer, "There is one human health that will always, always be more important than dental health, and that's mental health," makes the
Crown Council a perfect partnership for
Opalescence whitening. We know the power that tooth whitening has not only on esthetic appearance, but on the confidence and self-esteem of the patient. The patients, the children's charities who receive donations, as well as the dentists who freely give of their time to participate in the
Smiles for Life Foundation are all beneficiaries of the initiative.
Humanitarian and Disaster Relief Efforts at Home and Abroad
Ultradent has long been a staunch supporter of the dental professionals all over the world who take it upon themselves to help others through
humanitarian missions and initiatives. With clinicians reaching out nearly every day for product support and donations for dental missions in Haiti, Syria, Guatemala, Nepal, Egypt, the Dominican Republic, the Philippines and beyond, Ultradent was able to donate more than $460,000 of product to help support the efforts of humanitarian dentists in 2018 alone.
Ultradent's Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Karen Phillips, brought her 24+ years of clinical experience to a Crown Council mission trip to the Dominican Republic, providing free dental care to those in need.
Many of these dentists are members of the Crown Council, like Dr. Kevin E. Miller, who traveled to the Dominican Republic with his entire family in tow to perform charity dental work. In addition to donating Opalescence whitening products to the Crown Council's Smiles for Life Foundation, Ultradent also supports these missions with other necessary products, like Mosaic™ universal composite, Peak™ Universal Bonding adhesive, and more. On Dr. Miller's trip, he recalls using Mosaic composite to free-hand the anterior teeth of a young mother in her early 20s who had sustained injuries in a traumatic car wreck, including knocking out and damaging several of her teeth. Dr. Miller says, "It's physically taxing work, because it's sort of a marathon to get as much done as you can with the limited time you have, but it's an amazing thing as a professional, to be able to give back."
In fact, just last year, Ultradent received more than 300 requests from clinicans to aid in their humanitarian missions in 40 states and 75 countries. Dr. Fischer says, "During my career, I've encountered clinicians who were willing to do humanitarian work abroad and further the mission that Ultradent is also passionate about, which is improving oral health globally. There are so many touching and amazing accounts of these individuals traveling on their own time and at their own expense for the rare opportunity to support others, and we're proud to support them in any way we can."
Ultradent frequently donates products to be used at a small clinic at the basecamp of Mt. Everest, where Sherpa children who experience painful tooth decay can be treated and taught valuable dental hygiene skills.
Thanks to the success of Opalescence whitening, Ultradent's largest and most well-known product line, Ultradent is able to support not only these clinicians' efforts, but also provide disaster relief to parts of the world that are devastated by hurricanes, typhoons, earthquakes, and violence.
Some of Ultradent's disaster relief efforts include the opportunity to contribute significantly to Typhoon Haiyan relief efforts, as well as disaster relief for major devastating earthquakes that took place in Haiti and Ecuador. Closer to home, after hurricanes Florence, Michael, and Harvey caused catastrophic devastation in the Carolinas, Florida panhandle, and states surrounding the Gulf of Mexico,
Ultradent pledged $300,000 to aid in the rescue, relief, and rebuilding efforts of those effected, including the many dental professionals whose practices were severely and sometimes irreparably damaged by the storms.
Ultradent also pledged $30,000 to victims of the Pulse Nightclub massacre in Orlando, Florida in 2016. In a statement after the shooting, Dr. Dan Fischer reminded us of the reasons why Ultradent gives back and hopes to be able to continue to give back in the many years ahead, saying, "We must band together as Americans to do everything within our power to help those in need and counter those who wish to enact hate against those who are different from themselves. The victims are our collective sons, daughters, and family members. We must have courage and do the right thing, even at our most difficult moments."
The Legacy of Opalescence Whitening
Whether it's giving a music teacher her confidence back, helping a little boy learn how to smile confidently, or helping to improve the lives of children all over the world through the Crown Council's
Smiles for Life Foundation, Opalescence whitening's philosophy that
every person's smile is powerful continues to guide not only the brand's charitable efforts, but its marketing philosophies.
More than the esthetic improvements that tooth whitening makes possible, the
Opalescence whitening team hopes to continue supporting worthy causes and improving the lives of the patients who use it by emphasizing the beauty, happiness, and love that everyone's smile—no matter its shape or color—spreads to those around them. That is why we have done what we have done in the last 29 years, and what is motivating us for the next 29 years and more into the future.
Learn more about Ultradent's humanitarian efforts here.
Follow Ultradent's Heart of Ultradent humanitarian efforts on Instagram here
Learn more about the Crown Council and Ultradent's Smiles for Life Initiative here.
Purchase Opalescence Whitening here.
Dr. Dan Fischer, founder and CEO of Ultradent Products, Inc., and creator of its flagship, industry-leading tooth whitening brand Opalescence Whitening Systems, can frequently be heard saying, "There is one human health that will always, always be more important than dental health, and that's mental health."
Upon hearing this, one might wonder what dentistry has to do with mental health and why the founder of an international dental company is talking about it.
Well, as it turns out, there are many mental health issues tied to dental health—including self-esteem, depression, anxiety, body-image issues, and more. These issues can come into play when one experiences dental pain, is missing teeth, or as is most often the case, feels embarrassment about the color of their teeth. Dental issues can affect one's confidence to smile, the desire to interact with others and make friends, the ability to speak confidently in an interview or work setting, and can eventually affect one's overall self-esteem, which often leads to anxiety and depression.
Throughout the years, it's been amazing to see the change in our patients using Opalescence whitening. This month, in celebration of Opalescence whitening's 29th anniversary, we compiled a few of our favorite stories from patients about how Opalescence whitening has changed their lives. Each story is different, and their lives were changed in different ways, but each story is incredibly moving, hopeful, and a testament to the life-altering power of having a confident, healthy smile.
My Opalescence Story: Anna Lozier
Back in 2016, Anna Lozier had her hands full. A single mom to a teenager and a college student, she also juggled her time between working as a full-time medical assistant and studying full-time to become a nurse. With her hectic schedule, she had a difficult time getting in for regular dental checkups over the years. She had stains on her teeth from drinking coffee regularly and smoking, though she had quit smoking four years earlier.
At the time, Anna said, "I noticed that my teeth looked extra yellow and I decided it was time to take action, so I made an appointment to see my dentist to discuss options for whitening my smile."
After assessing that her teeth were indeed healthy enough for whitening, Anna's dental hygienist presented her with several Opalescence whitening options, including Opalescence™ PF whitening, which is used at home in custom trays, an in-office Opalescence™ Boost™ whitening treatment, or Opalescence Go™ prefilled, take-home, disposable whitening trays.
Anna knew immediately that she wanted to use Opalescence Go whitening, as it allowed her to skip the step of having impressions made for custom trays, so she could take it home and start whitening right away. She adds, "I wanted something that was less expensive than in-office whitening, but that was equally effective, and Opalescence Go whitening was the answer."
To say that Anna liked her results would be an understatement. In fact, she frequently sent her dentist's office daily progress photos to show how quickly the stains on her teeth disappeared.
Anna Lozier, Opalescence Go Whitening Patient
Of the experience, Anna says, "Opalescence Go whitening is perfect for busy people! In fact, I would often wear my whitening trays in the morning at work and I was so pleased that I could talk with them in and hardly anyone even noticed. They were so comfortable!"
They were so comfortable in fact, that Anna wore her Opalescence Go 10% hydrogen peroxide whitening trays every day from the day she took them home from the dental office for ten days straight, until she'd used up her first box. "I experienced zero sensitivity throughout the entire process," she said.
Now Anna meets her own patients with a sparkling white smile, and said she constantly gets compliments from family and friends, which has in turn boosted her self-esteem. "It's definitely given me a more confident smile," she says…with a smile!
My Opalescence Story: JJ Harris
Shannon Pace Brinker still recalls in vivid detail the first time she met JJ Harris's mom, Leigha. Shannon, a CDA and president of the Academy of Chairside Assisting, often travels the country, and the world, lecturing on dentistry. During one of her stops in Salt Lake City, Utah, where she happened to be lecturing on Ultradent's prefilled, disposable Opalescence Go whitening trays, she remembers Leigha calling her name and making her way toward her through the crowded lecture hall at the end of her speech.
"Ms. Brinker," she said. "My name is Leigha Harris, and I'm a dental assistant. I want to show you something."
At first perplexed, Shannon watched as Leigha pulled out her phone and held it up so Shannon could see as she began scrolling through photos of her little boy, JJ. "Notice a pattern?" Leigha asked.
JJ's mother Leigh noticed he never smiled with his teeth, even in school photos, because he was self-conscious of their color.
Shannon did indeed notice an obvious pattern right away. JJ didn't smile. It was something Leigha had noticed for the past several years, telling Shannon, "I had noticed that JJ's teeth were significantly yellower than some of the other kids his age, and I wanted to give him the opportunity to change that, so when I heard about Opalescence Go whitening, I thought, 'This would be a great opportunity for JJ to whiten!'"
Shannon immediately sympathized. She recalls, "Think of having seven years of school pictures with no smile in them! I think back on my own kids and the sweet school pictures where they're grinning and missing a tooth. They're so fun to look back on! After seeing so many photos of JJ where he refused to smile, I asked Leigha, 'Is it really that bad? I can't see his teeth in these photos, but they really couldn't be THAT bad." And Leigha said, "Yes, they're really that bad…to him."
More photos of JJ refusing to show his teeth before he whitened. In fact, even his little brother began smiling without opening his mouth because of JJ's example.
Dr. Fischer often speaks about the importance that confidence in one's smile plays in a person's life—especially in the lives of young people. In fact, it's one of the reasons he invented Opalescence whitening. He has said, "Going through the teenage years can be tough on humans, and it's important that we as clinicians be sensitive to their needs."
Shannon, like Dr. Fischer, understood this very well. She said, "After Leigha assured me that JJ had gotten his six-month dental checkup and that his teeth were healthy, I immediately accepted the challenge. I talked to Leigha about each and every step she needed to follow for JJ to whiten his teeth with Opalescence Go whitening."
With that, Shannon sent Leigha on her way with an Opalescence Go whitening kit for her son JJ to try under her supervision.
Shannon says, "It wasn't but a short week before Leigha started sending me photos of how JJ's teeth looked and thanking me for letting her try the Opalescence Go whitening on JJ." She added, "It was so amazing to see him go from believing his teeth were ugly and not smiling to seeing him smiling and happy. It was so cute!" she remarks, tearing up.
After bleaching with Opalescence Go whitening, JJ began confidently showing his teeth when he smiled!
And it wasn't just JJ that benefitted. Leigha had noticed that JJ's younger brother was beginning to hide his teeth as well, so she began the same protocol with him after determining that his teeth were healthy enough to whiten with their dentist. And he soon began smiling with his mouth open and teeth showing too!
Dr. Fischer says, "We've found over the years that it can be life-changing when someone whitens their teeth. For sure, someone who is self-conscious of speaking or smiling because of the color of their teeth can simply whiten and make it a non-issue."
Then came the icing on the cake. "One day," Shannon said, "I got on my computer and there was an email from Leigha with a big school photo of JJ grinning from ear to ear and she just wrote, "Look what you've done!"
Of JJ's transformation, JJ's mom Leigha says, "I've not only noticed a huge change in his smile, but also in his personality. Over the past two or three years his school pictures were just closed-mouth smiles and this is first time I actually got a real smiling picture from school, so I think it's really changing his confidence." She continues, "Through this whole process, Shannon has been so supportive, caring, and has really followed through for my little family."
JJ's tooth shade before and after using Opalescence Go whitening—however, his confidence was the biggest change everyone noticed!
Shannon concludes, "This case and this cause is just so near and dear to my heart. I'm so grateful to Dr. Fischer and to Ultradent for making this product that really has changed JJ's life."
My Opalescence Story: Lara Wolford
As a very busy music and choir teacher, Lara Wolford of Piqua, Ohio, says she's always been aware of how her teeth look because she's always singing or teaching others to sing. However, she wasn't always very confident about people seeing her teeth—often feeling self-conscious about their color and wishing they were whiter.
Lara Wolford at her college graduation, prior to whitening her teeth with Opalescence Go whitening.
But that's all changed now that she's discovered Opalescence Go tooth whitening. "Having a bright smile is a huge plus when you are in a career where people are looking at your mouth all the time. I teach over 800 students, and when I'm modeling how I want them to sing particular words or even singing along with them, it's nice to know that my smile looks fantastic and bright." She adds, "I also love that Opalescence whitening gel contains fluoride, because I know I'm doing something good for my teeth while I'm whitening."
Lara Wolford showing off her confident smile after bleaching with Opalescence Go whitening.
Lara says that in addition to the confidence that her new brighter, whiter smile has given her, the reason she chose Opalescence Go whitening was because of her busy, often hectic lifestyle. "I gravitated toward Opalescence Go whitening when my dental hygienist told me about various teeth whitening options available because it was just so convenient. During the whitening process, I didn't have to mess with strips or wait to get custom trays made. It was just so easy to pop a tray of Opalescence Go whitening in my mouth and then go about my business." She continues, "I also loved how the results were practically instantaneous. Within the first few trays, my smile was already whiter. With my crazy schedule, that was a huge selling point and I'd recommend it to anyone who has a similar work schedule or busy lifestyle."
Lara calls her results "glorious," but says that the biggest change, in her own words, is that "my smile now matches my mood and energy, and it only makes me want to smile more."
Learn more about Opalescence whitening here!
Despite the challenge some dentists find in getting their patients excited about regular six-month cleanings, most clinicians can find a patient of almost any age that's enthusiastic and interested in a whiter, brighter smile! With that in mind, what better way to attract new patients—and subsequently, increase practice profits—than by implementing a turn-key teeth whitening sample program sure to get results?
Ultradent had this strategy in mind when creating the newest packaging for its award-winning, disposable, convenient teeth whitening system—Opalescence Go™ whitening.
The innovators behind the industry-leading Opalescence™ Whitening Systems prioritized the point of view of busy patients and clinicians when they designed Opalescence Go whitening's new look and feel—especially when it comes to sampling.
Opalescence Go whitening has a new look and feel, including a new dispense feature.
Now practices have the option of purchasing a sample tower with the same modern, deluxe look and feel of the new Opalescence Go whitening packaging. It's loaded with single use, separately packaged whitening applicators (our Ultrafit™ trays) that instantly mold to the teeth for a custom-like fit. A handy take-home card is included with each tray that reveals full step-by-step instructions for use. This enables the patient to use Opalescence Go whitening correctly the first time, without spending unnecessary time with office staff for explanations.
The new Opalescence Go sample cards open up to reveal easy to follow instructions so the patient can take the sample and go!
Additionally, its disposability and Ultrafit tray system allows clinicians to introduce patients to teeth whitening without the commitment of creating custom trays. It's a win-win for patient and clinician in terms of economics, efficiency, and barrier of entry! Thanks to this, sampling Opalescence Go whitening strategically can truly take a practice to the next level in terms of patient pool, and of course revenue.
The Opalescence Go Whitening Sample Tower is available in Mint and Melon flavors.
The 2 Ways Samples Help Increase Cash Flow
Sometimes the hygienist, assistant, or clinician runs the risk of offending the patient by implying they need whiter teeth. Steve Gerber, an Ultradent sales trainer, suggests these tips for avoiding awkward whitening conversations with the patient:
Tip #1. It's actually really easy. I always tell our doctors to have samples of our take-home, semi-custom Opalescence Go whitening system in their office and at the end of their patients' appointments ask them if they'd like [you] to put trays in to sample it. I've rarely heard a story where the patient turns down a free sample of tooth whitening. Then, once the patient has seen how it works, they usually come back wanting to purchase the system and complete the whitening process. By offering them that initial sample of Opalescence Go whitening, you've bypassed any awkward whitening conversation and let them come to the conclusion themselves about whether or not they'd like to whiten. The answer is usually "yes!"
Tip #2. When dental practices purchase our Opalescence Go whitening tray sample towers to display at the front of the office, most dentists who have employed this strategy have said that a high percentage of their patients who take a sample, or try one on in the office, end up buying a full patient kit (which contains 10 trays and sells for anywhere from $50 to $100). Even if only two of the twenty patients who try a sample from the tower end up buying kits, the dentist has already more than covered the cost of the sample tower, while still making a profit. I would say that's a pretty sound investment.
Paired with the Opalescence Go whitening sample tower, keeping whitening patient kits in clear display throughout the office (at the front desk as well as in operatories) is another good sampling strategy. Patients are more likely to see the attractive teeth whitening display, and upon inquiring office staff can seize the opportunity to send them home with a sample—or offer to help them try a sample on the spot! More often than not it results in a sell, continued patient visits, and patient referrals. Viewing teeth whitening sampling as a strategic business move instead of a free giveaway is truly a simple, easy way to transform a practice and its revenue without a hefty investment.
Learn more or order Opalescence Go whitening patient kits and sample towers here!
Ultradent added two new vice presidents to its
executive team—Dr. Jaleena Jessop as VP of Clinical Affairs, and Karen Phillips as VP of Sales and Marketing. Both women bring a rich background and breadth of experience to their new roles and are proven, outstanding leaders in their field of expertise.
Today you'll have the chance to learn about both women's impressive professional backgrounds, and also a bit more about their dynamic personalities—their favorite movies, their favorite
Ultradent products, and more!
Dr. Jaleena Jessop's Professional Background:
Dr. Jaleena Jessop, Ultradent's new Vice President of Clinical Affairs.
Dr. Jaleena Jessop, a practicing dentist for 17 years, has brought an impressive depth of understanding of dental products and procedures, as well as an expert critical eye and voice to many of Ultradent's departments in the last two and a half years in her role as the Director of Clinical Affairs.
Additionally, Dr. Jessop has made valuable contributions to Ultradent for many years, playing an important role in the company's New Product Evaluation Committee, as well as consulting on numerous product development and design projects. Dr. Jessop has also participated regularly for several years in the company's upper management meetings, helping to establish the strategic direction of Ultradent and contributing her vast clinical acumen to many of the company's decisions.
Dr. Jaleena Jessop began her undergraduate work at the University of Utah, studying medical biology prior to attending dental school. She then went on to graduate with honors in oral surgery from Loma Linda University School of Dentistry in 2002. She later completed a two-year certification for straight wire orthodontics from the American Orthodontic Society. Dr. Jessop served for two years on the Utah Dental Association board. She’s also served for several years on the National Advisory Board at the University of Utah Dental School, where she currently teaches as an adjunct professor. On top of that, Dr. Jessop owns a private dental practice where she specializes in esthetic and minimally invasive dentistry.
Thanks to Dr. Jessop's connections and talent for recognizing other outstanding clinicians, she has built the team of doctors that make up our Clinical Affairs team.
"With Ultradent's vision to improve oral health globally, as well as her commitment to go above and beyond in serving both the clinician and patient, it is completely appropriate that Dr. Jessop should represent our Clinical department at the highest level of the organization, which will enable her to offer solutions that are driven from her clinical insights for many years into the future." —Dirk Jeffs, President of Ultradent Products, Inc.
Lightning Round Questions with Dr. Jessop:
Dr. Jaleena Jessop
How do you feel about your new role as Vice President of Clinical Affairs, and what are you looking forward to?
I look forward to, along with my team, incorporating clinical relevance to as many parts of the company as possible and making our clinical voice heard and applied to every aspect of what we do, for the benefit of our customers. I have a fabulous team of doctors that bring diverse perspectives, opinions, and methods of practicing to the group—and when we meet I enjoy hearing each voice and perspective. This ensures clinically we're covering our bases and making sure that we're offering products that appeal to a broad span of dentists, and consider different points of view as we're developing them. I think that is a huge asset that our diverse group of doctors [brings].
What unique perspective do you hope to bring to the executive team?
If my team and I can bring a clinical voice to various aspects of our business—from development to marketing—I believe it will communicate the message to our dental colleagues (who are our customers): that we hear them, we value their needs and what they're saying, and that our goal is to help them solve problems they face every day. I think heading up the clinical aspect of the company as a practicing dentist ensures we'll continue to offer what Ultradent has always uniquely offered to the marketplace—products made for clinicians by clinicians. That will and must continue to be our mantra, message, and mission. It is the reason Ultradent products have always been and will continue to be innovative and cutting-edge.
What progress and changes do you hope to see at Ultradent in the next 10 years?
I think that as we grow it's important that we not be afraid to be bold with the research and development of new products, and instill a solid confidence in our people. This gives the freedom to create and take risks while staying conscious of our mission and ultimately the end user—the patient. I believe this will enable us to make moves that will take Ultradent confidently and competitively into the future.
What is your favorite Ultradent product?
I would have to say our
Peak Universal Bonding Agent. Without it I couldn't practice dentistry.
What is your ultimate vacation spot?
At home in my courtyard. I don't have to go anywhere, I can be in my pajamas if I want, and I'm comfy—surrounded by the people I love.
Dr. Jessop pictured with several of her sisters, her daughters, and nieces.
What is your favorite movie?
I love the old movie Shenandoah and on the goofier side, I love Step Brothers and Zoolander. I would much prefer to laugh than to cry when watching a movie!
What is your favorite hobby?
Cooking and remodeling!
What do you do to decompress?
I love doing Bikram Yoga.
You know, this isn't really a quote, per se, but not that long ago, I bought a t-shirt in Seattle that says, "Farming saved my life," and I love it so much because it perfectly captures how I grew up, and my philosophy that you should never be afraid to get your hands dirty. It's my favorite t-shirt because for me, that saying is so true.
I love the artistic side of dentistry that still allows me to help people. One of my patients is a well-known fine artist, and one day when he was in my chair I said to him, "You know, I just love your art. I have some of your art in my house and what you do is incredible," and he said to me, "And I love your art, which is why I come here." It was so incredibly touching, and one of the best compliments I've ever received. I love that dentistry doesn’t always have be like the way it’s portrayed in movies.
Karen Phillips's Professional Background:
Karen Phillips, Ultradent's new Vice President of Sales and Marketing.
Karen Phillips brings 19 years of dedicated, passionate service at Ultradent to her new role as the company's VP of Sales and Marketing. Prior to coming to Ultradent, Karen worked for 24 years in clinical dentistry, with several of those years as Dr. Gordon Christensen's course clinical coordinator and lead dental assistant.
Starting as a territory account manager at Ultradent in 2000, Karen's vast clinical knowledge, experience, and passion for product education and training led to her promotion to regional manager. Later, she was promoted to Ultradent's corporate headquarters as the sales and product training manager. In this role Karen created, defined, and structured “Ultradent University,” Ultradent’s training program still in use today.
Later, Karen's promotion to U.S. Director of Sales resulted in consistent sales growth during her six-year tenure. The company's salesforce also grew from 92 to 140 territory account managers under her leadership.
In 2018, Karen became Ultradent's Director of Field Marketing and Events. She oversaw: seminars, public relations, training, universities, the company's key opinion leader program, trade shows, and technical product advisors.
In her new role as VP of Sales and Marketing Karen will lead not only the Field Marketing team but the eBusiness, Sales, Marketing, and Brand Management teams as well.
"In addition to her vast business experience and 24 years of clinical experience—including having worked closely with
Dr. Gordon Christensen, one of the most renowned dentists in the world—Karen's professionalism, care, and work ethic has earned the respect of her peers throughout the organization. She will be an outstanding addition to our executive team for many years to come." —Dr. Fischer, founder and CEO of Ultradent Products, Inc.
Lightning Round Questions with Karen Phillips:
Karen Phillips presenting at Ultradent's National Sales Meeting in 2018.
How do you feel about your new role as VP of Sales and Marketing, and what are you looking forward to?
I always love a new challenge and I appreciate growth. I know that the only way to do that is by accepting new opportunities and continuing to learn. I'm also excited to dive into new parts of the business. I hope to assist the team in making a positive difference with the life and work experience I've had. I believe if we share our experiences with others, everyone learns and benefits.
I hope that my outside sales experience, combined with my clinical experience, will help us as a company make decisions that keep our customers at top of our mind. I'm also grateful and look forward to bringing the work ethic and principle of sacrifice my parents taught me, my energy and enthusiasm for
Ultradent and our customers, and my belief that happiness comes from having gratitude for what we have.
Of course, my greatest hope would be continuing upward growth and continuous improvement. At Ultradent, we've established a certain brand and base of customers. I see our brand—what we stand for and offer—only growing (both domestically and internationally) as we focus on continuing to offer the most innovative solutions for our customers.
What is your favorite Ultradent Product?
VALO curing light. It just far exceeds anything that's out there and I could talk about it all day long!
Ultimate vacation spot?
Home, honestly. That includes here in Utah and Denver, Colorado where my daughter and her family live.
Karen enjoys spending time with her two grandchildren in Denver as often as possible.
Favorite hobby outside of work?
Golfing with my husband.
What is your favorite movie?
Planes, Trains, and Automobiles—it's funny, adventurous, and in the end, it's heartwarming.
"Life is short—take the trip, buy the shoes, eat the cake."
I also love, "Tell me and I will forget, show me and I will remember, involve me and I will understand."
I love anything DIY because I just love to create.
I met my husband when I was 15, and we've been together ever since!
Learn about Ultradent's founder and CEO, and the rest of Ultradent's executive team here.
Three words come to mind when describing world renowned dentist and lecturer Dr. John Graeber: progressive, passionate, and expert.
In fact, he's so passionate about moving dentistry forward he's become a laser connoisseur throughout the years—looking to make everyday procedures more comfortable through modern technology. He uses soft tissue diode lasers in his office—where patients often travel from various parts of the country for their dental care—and thanks to his signature "soft touch" he's earned a reputation for an approach he calls not just "minimally invasive," but "micro-invasive."
That's why it's an extreme honor that Dr. Graeber has declared Ultradent's Gemini 810 + 980 Diode Laser his "favorite on the market today." We sat down to learn a little bit more about why he loves using it in his practice on a daily basis. That is, when he's not lecturing or teaching. (Find out more about how you can attend one of his incredible events here).
Here are a few of the reasons Dr. John Graeber loves the Gemini laser:
"The Gemini laser is the fastest cutting diode laser I've ever used, period."
The Gemini laser features 20 watts of peak power.
Thanks to the Gemini laser's fast, super-pulsed cutting ability patients experience less charring, less tissue pulling, and minimal tissue tagging.
The Gemini laser features two wavelengths (810 nm and 980 nm) that can be used separately or in combination.
Dr. Graeber says that "the ability to use attributes of both wavelengths in different clinical situations is unmatched. For example, I use the 810 nm wavelength for coagulation and decontamination. I use the 980 nm wavelength for fast cutting on normal tissue, among a variety of other procedures I perform using both wavelengths. There's just nothing else like it on the market."
The Gemini laser's LED interface sits at the right angle and provides optimum visibility with a gorgeous appearance.
"I love the incredible design on the interface of the Gemini laser," Dr. Graeber remarked. "When it's sitting on the counter of my operatory, even my patients are blown away when they see it. It's spectacular. But more specifically, there are two very important things about the Gemini laser's interface. One, the size of the display, and two, the angle of the display to a seated dentist. The Gemini laser is probably one of the very few diode lasers on the market you can clearly see and read out of the side of your eye when you are sitting in your operatory, working on a patient. That's the kind of attention to detail put into its design—catering to the working dentist—that I appreciate. I also love that the whole thing is battery powered with a cordless foot pedal. It's all just so modern, convenient, and well thought out."
Illuminated Pre-Initiated Tip
"The lovely LED internal illumination at the tip of the laser is so helpful when working in all areas of the mouth. That, along with the light weight of the handpiece, permits unparalleled precision when I'm working—which is incredibly important. I also love that the tips are pre-initiated because it makes my work more efficient, and allows me to provide my patients with consistent results."
Dr. Graeber ended our discussion by saying, "Every feature on the Gemini laser has been thought out and scrutinized and carefully designed with the clinician in mind. That's why it's my favorite. Anyone who is serious about using a soft tissue laser in their practice will love this device."
Click here to learn more about or purchase the Gemini 810 + 980 Diode Laser.
Click here to sign up for one of Dr. John Graeber's CE courses, coming soon to a city near you.
When it comes to restorative dentistry, Class II posterior restorations comprise about 50% of all cases performed by general practitioners. When it comes to these often tricky cases, Ultradent's new and improved Omni-Matrix disposable retainer and matrix is the perfect tool to help clinicians create beautiful posterior Class II restorations.
Ultradent's newly redesigned Omni-Matrix disposable retainer and matrix.
The Omni-Matrix retainer band's design still features everything clinicians loved about it before, including the winged and wingless designs, disposability, wide and narrow bands, but now there's more: a new body design! The pivoting head and new body design allows the Omni-Matrix retainer to customize to a wide variety of preparations in any quadrant of the mouth, without sacrificing quality or patient comfort. It also allows for superior clinician visibility.
The Omni-Matrix retainer can also be used for single or simultaneous restorations and is available in either winged or wingless designs. As before, dentists have the option of using mylar or ultra-thin burnishable stainless steel bands in universal-width or narrow-width. The retainers are also conveniently preloaded and disposable, eliminating the need to sterilize or disinfect them before or after use—saving valuable time and money. Plus, the Omni-Matrix retainer is easy to remove without disturbing restorative material.
The Omni-Matrix retainer comes in winged or wingless designs.
For the minimally invasive dentist, the Omni-Matrix retainer comes in particularly handy when the pathology is removed, but the contacts are unbroken. About using the Omni-Matrix retainer in these scenarios, Dr. Todd Snyder says, "It's in these cases that I just need something quick that can adapt to the shape of the tooth and re-create the tooth morphology. The preparation design having not broken the contact allows me the convenience of using a retainer matrix to create the correct shape, as well as a good contact."
The Omni-Matrix retainer and matrix is a convenient option for restoring the anatomy of the tooth efficiently and easily in Class II posterior restorations.
Because a top-of-the-line disposable retainer matrix is an essential component of every clinician's Class II toolkit, Ultradent's redesigned Omni-Matrix retainer is getting rave reviews on its new body style. Dr. George Freedman said, "It's fast, easy, convenient, and disposable! What else could you ask for?" Dr. Todd Snyder said, "The Omni-Matrix retainer allows me to do quality and efficient work. In business and life in general, anything that provides quality and efficiency is, quite frankly, priceless."
If you loved it before, you'll love it even more now!
The Omni-Matrix disposable retainer and matrix features everything you loved and more:
• Unmatched body design is ideal for both single and simultaneous restorations
• Innovative shape allows superior procedural visibility and patient comfort
• Ultra-thin burnishable stainless steel adapts to preparations
• Unique winged and wingless styles meet individual case needs
• Disposable design saves you time and money
To learn more or to purchase the new and improved Omni-Matrix disposable retainer and matrix system, click here!
In this month's dental practice management series, we discuss dentistry, profits, and ethics.
Distrust is running rampant in today's world. Distrust of the government, journalists, the pharmaceutical industry, sports referees, etc. And now distrust for doctors, dentists, and other medical care providers is all too commonplace—and in some cases, it's merited and valid.
We had the opportunity to sit down with Dr. Dan Fischer, founder and CEO of Ultradent Products, Inc. and a practicing dentist, to discuss dentistry ethics and running a profitable practice. We talked about his beliefs and philosophies regarding patient care, trust, and how to gauge if you're really doing what's best for the patient. Here are a few of his personal credos, in his words.
Principle #1—Minimally Invasive Dentistry is Patient-Centered Dentistry
Dr. Fischer: "When it comes to practicing dentistry, the first and foremost belief upon which I center all of my other ethical standards is that one of the most important opportunities we have as dentists is to be the guardian of the oral cavity. I believe that the more we respect the natural tissues and actively preserve them as much as is reasonably possible, the better it is for the patient.
Preserving and protecting the patient's natural dentition with a minimally invasive approach is the value around which Dr. Fischer centers all else.
"Many call this 'minimally invasive dentistry.' I believe minimally invasive dentistry not only involves avoiding cutting the enamel and tissues wherever possible, but it encompasses preserving the tooth that has perhaps already been compromised or cut in some way. In these cases, we must do everything we reasonably can to rehabilitate it to the best of our ability.
"All in all, I've come to believe that the more we cut the tooth, the more we weaken the tooth. The more of the tooth we cut and the more times we cut the tooth, the sooner we kill the tooth, because trauma to the tooth is additive. Our opportunity as dentists is to respect the natural tissues, preserving them as much as possible and whenever possible, with the ultimate goal of keeping our patients healthy with their natural dentition throughout their lives. I believe that if we keep this ultimate goal on the top of our mind, we will be practicing not only minimally invasive dentistry, but patient-centered dentistry as well."
Principle #2—Ethical Dentistry and Profitable Dentistry do not Have to Compete
Dr. Fischer: "Dentistry is not only a 'care' profession, but it is also a business. I'm often asked how I balance doing what's best for the patient and still maintain profitability, when some dentists out there are placing often expensive crowns, porcelain veneers, etc., that are often unnecessary because there are less expensive (and less invasive) solutions in many cases.
Doing what's best for the patient creates loyalty and referrals, which in turn, lifts your practice's bottom line.
"While I do not condemn the placement of porcelain veneers in cases where it is absolutely what the patient wants, or where no other option is logical, I do not believe in taking advantage of a patient's lack of dental expertise to recommend surgeries and procedures that aren't necessary.
"I think something that is important to remember, that is not only applicable to this, but to all areas of life is the saying, 'Don't let the wrong things other people do keep you from doing the right things that you know you should do.'
"Also, I believe that if we gain the trust of our patients and always do what's best for them, a profitable practice with loyal patients and referrals will surely follow."
Principle #3—Gain Patient Trust Through Prevention
Dr. Fischer: "Gaining your patients' trust is a big deal. In my many years as a dentist, I've come to realize that the best way to gain patient trust is by putting an emphasis on prevention—be it their hygiene, their diet, by placing pit and fissure sealants, and by demonstrating to your patients that you are there to help them avoid problems before they happen to the best of your ability.
An emphasis on prevention helps to gain the patient's trust and good will.
"Emphasizing prevention goes a long way in creating trust and gaining their assurance that you have what's best for them in mind before anything else. You must communicate and demonstrate that you want them to have good oral health. You want to help them prevent caries. You want to help them avoid surgeries and more invasive interventions in every way possible by preventing the problem in the first place. That is how you earn trust."
Principle #4—Practice the "Golden Rule," or Better yet, "The Daughter Test"
Dr. Fischer: "I often say that we should treat our patients the way we would want to be treated. That's the golden rule of dentistry. However, another nice, and perhaps even more powerful check is what I call the 'daughter test.' I like to ask myself (and I encourage other dentists to ask themselves), 'Is this something I would do on my daughter or son?' There's no one we are more protective of than our children. In fact, I would dare say most people are more protective of their children than they are of their own well-being, so applying that litmus test is always a nice reminder to me of what's best for the patient."
Practicing the "Daughter or Son Test" is a good way to gauge whether you're doing what's best for the patient.
Click here to learn more about Dr. Fischer and Ultradent.
Click here to read more of Dr. Fischer's posts here on The Arch: The Ultradent Blog.
"The first thing I thought when I got into my accident was, 'Oh no, I can't be a dentist anymore.'"
Dr. Eric Harris was in a severe motorcycle crash in 2009 between Ashton and Tetonia Idaho, during a Crown Council "Smiles for Life" benefit ride (a foundation which Ultradent supports with the donation of its whitening product, Opalescence Go™ whitening).
"On the last day of the ride, I fell asleep on my motorcycle going 80 mph. I broke my back in three places, broke both of my hands and arms—particularly my right hand, my operating hand— which was crushed. To say the least, it knocked me right out of practice. To this day, I have 19 screws in my operating hand."
Dr. Harris was used to "putting the pedal to the metal," metaphorically speaking. In the ten years prior to his accident, he had completed his undergrad work necessary for admittance into the University of the Pacific's Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry—a prestigious three-year dental school. He graduated, had a family, and went into full-time practice in Arizona. He had gotten used to a fast-paced, hectic life, and it didn't show any signs of stopping.
"Looking back, I see my accident as a sign that I needed to slow down. At the time, it seemed like a horrible situation to be in. But now, I look at it as a blessing in disguise."
Dr. Eric Harris, pictured well into his recovery after his devastating motorcycle accident.
As Dr. Harris began the long process of recovery, he took a teaching job at the Arizona School of Dentistry and Oral Health. Slowly regaining his strength day by day, in 2012 he felt strong enough to join The Crown Council—a prestigious alliance of dentists around the world, on one of their dental humanitarian missions to the Dominican Republic to set up a temporary dental clinic and provide free care for the duration of the trip. Dr. Harris says, "[had] a great time and while I was there, I met a Dominican dentist by the name of Dr. Johnathan Diaz Nicolas, who taught at the university down there and whose mother was the dean of the dental school. Since I had just started teaching, I proposed bringing a group of my dental school students down to the Dominican Republic, to set up a humanitarian clinic. They could get some real-life experience and treat some of these people that really needed it in conjunction with Dr. Nicolas Diaz's dental students from the D.R. That's how we co-founded Bright Island Outreach."
Dr. Eric Harris mentors a dental student volunteer during a Bright Island Outreach trip.
Today, Bright Island Outreach—a 501(c)(3) charitable non-profit—hosts up to six or more dental humanitarian trips to various parts of the Dominican Republic every year. They take between 30–40 volunteers (many of which are current dental students in the United States and Canada) and 15–20 dental students from the Dominican Republic.
A Bright Island Outreach portable clinic in the Dominican Republic.
"For each trip, we schedule three full days of clinic time (the clinic is 100% portable), not including breakdown and set-up. During those three clinic days, we try and see about 125 patients a day. We also send groups of volunteers to surrounding elementary schools who take them toothpaste, toothbrushes, and do a little dental hygiene presentation. They teach them how to properly brush and floss and while we're there, we put fluoride varnish on the kids' teeth," says Dr. Harris.
Since Bright Island Outreach's inception in 2013, they've cared for over 6,000 people in the Dominican Republic and continue with each trip, striving to make a meaningful impact there.
Dominican man before and after receiving dental care from a Bright Island clinic.
He adds, "We go to the northern part of the island twice a year, the southern part twice a year, and the western part twice a year so that if we're treating someone and they need a follow-up or something fixed, we'll be there six months later to treat them."
Dominican man gets his front teeth restored by Bright Island Outreach volunteers.
In a country that thrives on tourism, where locals work at hotels and resorts, dental care (like the full-mouth reconstructions that Bright Island Outreach provides) truly changes lives and enables locals to get jobs and support their families. With missing or rotting teeth, they wouldn't be able to work in not only the tourism industry, but most other professional settings as well. Dr. Harris adds, "Sometimes, fixing their teeth simply means they'll be able to get the basic nutrition that they need."
Dominican woman gets full-mouth reconstruction courtesy of Bright Island Outreach volunteers, enabling her to get basic nutrition, improve job prospects, and boosting her confidence.
Bright Island Outreach isn't just changing the lives of the Dominicans it serves. Says Dr. Harris, "The work we do in the D.R. has changed my life immensely. I'm just grateful I was able to turn a terrible situation (my accident) into a career that is fulfilling and that is making a difference in the world.
"I absolutely love providing dental care and help to the people down there. In many cases, I've gotten to know them through the years and watch many of the kids we've treated grow up and become teenagers and even adults. I even follow a few of them on Instagram, like a young kid that is now a teenage rapper in the Dominican Republic. It's really fun."
Additionally, the development opportunities that Bright Island Outreach provides young dental students is a fulfilling aspect of Dr. Harris' job. "It's really satisfying to see the dental students we take down with us on a volunteer basis get to actually put into practice what they're learning in school, and help people while they're at it. It's such a thrill for them, and it's been amazing to watch those young students go on to be very well respected dentists, prosthodontists, endodontists, and orthodontists that have their roots in Bright Island Outreach. Their successes are just amazing to see."
Bright Island Outreach volunteers are often dental students like those pictured above who go on to become successful practicing clinicians.
He adds, "Bright Island Outreach continues growing and we couldn't do what we do without the support of businesses like Ultradent that generously donate product and supplies, as well as the support of dental schools, organizations, and individuals that donate their time and money to make it possible.
Ultradent's Jiffy™ Polishing System being used in a Bright Island Outreach clinic.
"We have no political or religious agenda and nothing to tell. We just use our resources and skills to serve a community in need, to travel with purpose, and to give back. Our motto at Bright Island Outreach is, 'Do more, be more, vive mas'."
Having started this journey with a broken back, broken arms, and two broken hands, it's clear that Dr. Harris is living by those words every day.
Click here to learn more about, support, or volunteer with Bright Island Outreach.
To learn more about Ultradent's humanitarian program, The Heart of Ultradent, and to follow us on Facebook, click here. If you'd like Ultradent to support your upcoming humanitarian endeavor, click here.
Ultradent has a commitment to providing superb training and Continuing Education to clinicians—surrounding not only our products but also the most innovative, minimally invasive dental techniques and practices—as part of our mission to improve oral health globally.
In line with this mission, Ultradent seeks out the very best dentists from around the world to teach seminars, host lectures, and attend our yearly Ultradent Summits as well as destination CE events. This provides you with the very best CE, no matter where you live.
By attending an Ultradent CE event you'll experience an enlightening, educational, practice-enriching experience that will change the way you do dentistry. So if you're not yet signed up to attend an event there's still plenty of opportunities! Check out the upcoming CE seminar events below that cover a wide array of topics, from composites, whitening, endo, practice management, lasers, bonding, and more. You don't want to miss out!
Chandler, Arizona—April 26, 2019
Contemporary Endodontics Starting Today
CE credits: 7
Dr. Carlos Spironelli Ramos, endodontist, international lecturer, and inventor will be presenting a course covering his groundbreaking philosophies and techniques in contemporary endodontics. Attendees will learn the benefits and limitations of reciprocation and rotation, the importance of file design and how this aspect can improve instrumentation results, how to determine working length electronically, and an intuitive two-file instrumentation technique that takes advantage of two different kinematics. The course offers 7 CE credits and will take place at the Hilton Phoenix Chandler in Chandler, AZ. Learn more or register online here or call 800.520.6640 to reserve your spot.
San Jose, California—April 26, 2019
Components of Standard Level Laser Certification
CE credits: 12
Interested in lasers? Just purchased a laser for your practice? This is the course for you! This all-encompassing laser course, taught by dental laser expert Dr. Edward R. Kusek, offers six hours of online education (to be completed prior to the hands-on course), and six hours of individualized, hands-on instruction where clinicians will learn all they need to know to complete their Academy of Laser Dentistry certification! The course offers 12 CE credits and will take place at the Marriott San Jose in San Jose, CA. Learn more or register online here or call 800.520.6640 to reserve your spot.
Santa Rosa, California—April 26, 2019
Esthetic Dentistry with Composites: Achieving Great Results and Longevity is Easier Than You May Think
Join fascinating and esteemed clinician and lecturer, Dr. Rafael Beolchi, for this enriching course on esthetic dentistry and composites. Attendees will gain a new perspective on placing anterior composites, learn the keys to short and long-term success with adhesion and photocuring, how to reduce clinical stress by improving case predictability, and how to simplify composite layering techniques while still achieving esthetic results. The course offers 7 CE credits and will take place at the Hyatt Regency in Santa Rosa, CA. Learn more and register online here or call 800.520.6640 to reserve your spot.
Las Vegas, Nevada—May 3, 2019
Interested in lasers? Just purchased a laser for your practice? This is the course for you! This all-encompassing laser course, taught by dental laser expert Dr. Edward R. Kusek, offers six hours of online education (to be completed prior to the hands-on course), and six hours of individualized, hands-on instruction where clinicians will learn all they need to know to complete their Academy of Laser Dentistry certification! The course offers 12 CE credits and will take place at the SLS Las Vegas in Las Vegas, NV. Learn more or register online here or call 800.520.6640 to reserve your spot.
Indianapolis, Indiana—May 3, 2019
The Real Beauty of Composite Resins: Esthetic, Durable, Profitable
Join esteemed esthetic dentist, Dr. Jaimeé Morgan, for a comprehensive course on creating beautiful, durable, and affordable composite restorations. Dr. Morgan uses her own stunning cases to demonstrate how clinicians can improve their results by integrating whitening, tissue management, and gingival sculpting. Attendees will learn new concepts for the placement of anterior and posterior composite restorations and time-saving techniques they can add to their everyday practice to reduce stress, increase profitability, and improve predictability. She will also expand attendees' knowledge on how to help patients avoid post-operative sensitivity. The course offers 7 CE credits and will take place at the Indianapolis Marriott North in Indianapolis, IN. Learn more or register online here or call 800.520.6640 to reserve your spot.
Charlotte, North Carolina—May 3, 2019
Join fascinating and esteemed clinician and lecturer, Dr. Rafael Beolchi, for this enriching course on esthetic dentistry and composites. Attendees will gain a new perspective on placing anterior composites, learn the keys to short and long-term success with adhesion and photocuring, how to reduce clinical stress by improving case predictability, and how to simplify composite layering techniques while still achieving esthetic results. The course offers 7 CE credits and will take place at the Hilton Charlotte University Place Hotel in Charlotte, NC. Learn more and register online here or call 800.520.6640 to reserve your spot.
El Paso, Texas—May 10, 2019
Esthetic Restorations and Principle-based Comprehensive Dentistry
CE credits: 6
Join renowned lecturer and clinician, Dr. Michael Miyasaki, for this exciting course. Dr. Miyasaki will discuss principles for treating the patient right and standing out in the crowd, how to implement case planning and patient education so patients can better value what you do, why every patient should learn about whitening, and techniques you need to know about successful bonding (hint: it's the small stuff that counts!). The event offers 6 credits and will take place at the Wyndham El Pas Airport Hotel in El Paso, TX. Learn more and register online here or call 800.520.6640 to reserve your spot.
Boise, Idaho—May 10, 2019
Join esteemed esthetic dentist, Dr. Jaimeé Morgan, for a comprehensive course on creating beautiful, durable, and affordable composite restorations. Dr. Morgan uses her own stunning cases to demonstrate how clinicians can improve their results by integrating whitening, tissue management, and gingival sculpting. Attendees will learn new concepts for the placement of anterior and posterior composite restorations and time-saving techniques they can add to their everyday practice to reduce stress, increase profitability, and improve predictability. She will also expand attendees' knowledge on how to help patients avoid post-operative sensitivity. The course offers 7 CE credits and will take place at The Grove Hotel in Boise, ID. Learn more or register online here or call 800.520.6640 to reserve your spot.
Vancouver, Washington—May 17, 2019
My Keys to Dental Success: The Art of Dentistry Without Being an Artist, Clinical Hacks, & Mastering Tough Conversations
Join the charismatic and knowledgeable Dr. Shea Bess as he takes you through the secrets to his dental success. Dr. Bess will cover a range of topics, including an innovative protocol for achieving quality bond strengths, simple techniques for creating artful composite restorations for the non-artsy dentist, and never-fail tips for making perfect impressions the first time. He advises attendees on which products to save on, and when and why it's important to invest in others. Additionally, he shares some gems on how he runs his practice and the keys to having tough, but necessary conversations! The course offers 6 CE credits and will take place at the Hilton Vancouver Washington, in Vancouver, WA. Learn more or register online here or call 800.520.6640 to reserve your spot.
Ultradent Latin America Summit
South Jordan, UT—June 24–25, 2019
US-CE Credits: 18 (CE credits only apply to doctors in the U.S and Puerto Rico)
Join us for Ultradent's Latin America Summit, where we welcome Spanish speaking dentists from around the world to Ultradent's South Jordan headquarters for two days of unforgettable, practice-enhancing and network-expanding education and fun. The Latin America Summit will be presented in Spanish, with presentations covering whitening, lasers, quality and lasting dentistry, adhesion, chemistry for endodontics, composites, light curing, preventative dentistry and more! Speakers include Dr. Dan Fischer, founder and CEO of Ultradent, as well as numerous influential and renown clinicians in the Latin American dental community such as Dr. Rafael Beolchi, Dr. Carlos Spironelli Ramos, and Dr. Sergio Velaquez. The event culminates in a very special dinner at Dr. and Mrs. Fischer's mountain home. Space is limited and we hope to see you there!
To learn more, register, and book a hotel at a special rate, click here.
Ultradent East Coast Summit
New Castle, New Hampshire—September 25–28, 2019
CE credits: 22
The ultimate in CE experiences, the Ultradent East Coast Summit offers three days of unforgettable, practice-enhancing enlightenment. Make friendships and connections to last a lifetime, offered for the first time in historic, coastal, New Castle, New Hampshire. This fall, September 25-28 2019, this summit will feature presentations on: bonding, lasers, endodontics, composites, whitening, and hygiene. There will also be a lecture from Ultradent’s founder and CEO, Dr. Dan Fischer. Experience the fabulous food, views, and world class hospitality of the Wentworth by the Sea Hotel, by Marriott. Lighthouses, sailboats, picturesque harbors, and a wonderful CE experience await. See you there!
Register online here or call 800.520.6640 (space is limited).
The Ultradent Summit
South Jordan, Utah—August 14–17, 2019 or October 16–19, 2019
CE credits: 24
Join us for Ultradent's most famouse CE experience—The Ultradent Summit—where renowned lecturers and dental experts convene at Ultradent's South Jordan, UT headquarters for three days of unforgettable, practice-enhancing enlightenment. Meet Ultradent’s founder and CEO, Dr. Dan Fischer along with the entire Ultradent family, while you make friends and connections to last a lifetime. This remarkable and unmatched educational event offers courses on: bonding, lasers, endodontics, composites, whitening, and the unique and fascinating history of Ultradent itself. Hear about Dr. Fischer’s unique dental philosophy as you enjoy a very special dinner at Dr. and Mrs. Fischer’s mountain home. Space is limited and we hope to see you there!
Register online here or call 800.520.6640 to reserve your spot.
There remains a growing belief among clinicians that obturation is to blame for endodontic failures. This notion has more recently fallen under scrutiny as researchers have discovered that the most thorough obturation can only reflect the quality of the cleaning and shaping of the canal. In fact, a number of researchers point to the thorough use of irrigants—making sure that the debris, and irrigant itself is lifted completely out of the canal, not forced out the apex—as the most important determinant in the long-term success of an endodontic procedure. The right irrigants, when used properly, eliminate harmful microorganisms and bacteria in the root and tubules, and prevent recontamination, even long after the RCT (root canal therapy) is complete. The recently acknowledged vital role of irrigants stands to reason, as RCT itself was born out of the necessity to treat the infected, and very often painful, dentinal tubules and roots that traditional restorative dentistry couldn't address.
ChlorCid™ Solution – 3% Sodium Hypochlorite (NaOCl)
Dating back to World War I, NaOCl solutions have been used in health care because of the antibacterial effects they provide. Studies have shown that irrigants containing antibacterial properties exhibit superior ability to reduce and eliminate bacteria when compared to a commonly used generic saline solution. NaOCl is both relatively inexpensive and, when used as an endodontic irrigant, exhibits antiseptic and lubricating properties. When in the canal, ChlorCid solution dissolves soft tissue/organic matter and acts as a file lubricant. When the solution comes into contact with the before-mentioned organic tissue, ChlorCid solution also releases chlorine, whose strong antimicrobial properties kill bacteria and prevent bacterial rebound by oxidizing the enzymes essential to its regrowth.
One of the concerns with NaOCl is the possibility of extrusion of the solution to periapical tissues past the apex. Depending on the level of patient sensitivity, this can produce everything from mild discomfort to large amounts of swelling and bruising. However, irrigating the canal with NaOCl with the NaviTip tip greatly reduces this risk. This tip is unsurpassed in its small diameter and technologically advanced preparation of the different areas of the cannula. There are areas of the tip that must be more flexible to navigate complex canals and other areas that must be more rigid to assure that the end of the tip arrives at the proper location. The end of the tip has even been specially designed with round edges to eliminate as much ledging as possible.
ChlorCid™ Surf Solution
ChlorCid Surf solution combines the benefits of 3% sodium hypochlorite with the added cleansing power of surfactant to break the surface tension and allow for better sodium hypochlorite penetration into difficult-to-reach places like isthmuses and lateral canals, as well as better wall contact, thanks to its unique formulation.
EDTA 18% – Ethylenediaminetetra Acetic Acid
While ChlorCid solution is used to disinfect and eliminate any residual soft tissue, the use of EDTA solution is the essential chelation step to remove the smear layer and remaining debris. Any time instruments are used in a canal, necrotic debris is left behind. EDTA solution is a chelating agent that conditions both the canal walls and individual dentinal tubule walls. Often preceded by ChlorCid solution, then followed by Consepsis solution, EDTA solution can as also be used as a final irrigant prior to obturation. We recommend the following step using Consepsis solution, but it is not mandatory in the obturation procedure. Despite EDTA solution's ability to clear and remove the smear layer, it has little to no antibacterial effects.
Consepsis™ Solution – 2% Chlorhexidine Gluconate
Widely known for its broad-spectrum, sustained antibacterial action, chlorhexidine gluconate, such as Ultradent's Consepsis solution, also has the added benefit of very low toxicity when used as an endodontic irrigant. The use of Consepsis solution has also been shown to reduce postoperative sensitivity. Used in the correct order, Consepsis solution makes for the ideal final irrigant just prior to obturation to further kill remaining bacteria.*
Thorough endodontic irrigation involves eliminating harmful bacteria, removing the debris and irrigants, and preventing anything from being pushed out the apex. For optimal results, we recommend starting with File-Eze to lubricate the files, then remove residual soft tissue (and provide some lubrication) with ChlorCid solution. There is not a tip on the market that is safer to deliver sodium hypochlorite directly to where it is needed in the canal than Ultradent's sideport NaviTip tip, which features a closed end and two sideport openings, which direct the flow of the product toward the sides of the canal, not toward the apex. Ultradent's 18% EDTA solution is an excellent chelating agent, and final disinfection is achieved using Consepsis solution, which has been shown to exhibit prolonged antimicrobial activity—further ensuring the future durability of the finished endodontic procedure.
Ultradent's endodontic irrigation solutions—ChlorCid, EDTA, and the award-winning Consepsis—are now available in economical 480ml bottles. To learn more, call 800-552-5512, or click here!
*It is important to note that mixing chlorhexidine and sodium hypochlorite will result in the formation of a potentially harmful precipitate.
During a root canal procedure, it's imperative that clinicians debride and cleanse canals thoroughly with endodontic irrigants—even where instruments can't reach. However, this can prove tricky, as irrigants must reach where they are needed without expressing beyond the apex of the canal.
Dr. Dan Fischer says, "The basic concept of irrigation in endodontics is to get the smallest cannula down close to the apex, but shy of the foramen, and to irrigate from the bottom up. It is imperative to start from the bottom to prohibit trapping air in the canal, because it is very difficult to displace an air bubble when you're filling the canal from the top down. However, the deeper the canal, the more difficult it is to get the cannula down to the apical region of the tooth."
In addition to the difficulties caused by deep canals, root canals often have curves with sharp turns that make navigating the cannula to the apical region difficult. That's where Ultradent's NaviTip™ tips really stand out against the other endodontic tips on the market, thanks to Ultradent's exclusive flex tip technology.
Unlike traditional endodontic tips, the cannula of each NaviTip tip is slightly rigid through the base and center, but flexible at the tip to allow it to bend and snake through each canal. Additionally, the end of the each NaviTip tip is smoothed and rounded to allow the tip to slide past corners rather than scraping and potentially ledging as they proceed through the canal. This gives clinicians the ability to precisely deliver any irrigant, intracanal medication, and sealant exactly where it is needed. Each NaviTip tip also features patented Lok-Tite™ technology, with double threads that lock the tip into place for increased security and wings for easy attachment and removal. Every NaviTip tip is also equipped with a tight-fitting rubber stop, allowing for precise measurement that further facilitates accurate delivery and prevents risk of extrusion through apical tissue.
To further prevent risk of extrusion, Ultradent offers NaviTip 31 ga tips with Double Sideports, which allow irrigants to be delivered through non-clogging dual sideports that are offset from each other vertically and laterally.
The tip of the cannula on each NaviTip tip with Double Sideports features a flexible end that is capped and rounded for safety in the apical third. The NaviTip tip with Double Sideports is available in a variety of sizes. The smallest tip, measuring in at 31 ga, is dentistry's thinnest cannula, which allows clinicians to easily navigate even the most intricate canal spaces.
Ultradent also offers NaviTip FX tips—endodontic brushes that are designed to clean, scrub, and irrigate the canal simultaneously. This tip is able to reach the apical third and deliver the irrigant while the brush scrubs the canal wall, dislodging debris.
When used with Ultradent’s EDTA 18% solution, the NaviTip FX tip works to remove the smear layer, including smear plugs.
In the age of irrigation, Ultradent’s Navtip tips offer safety, accuracy, and a variety of delivery options for every root canal procedure from start to finish. To learn more about NaviTip tips, call 800-552-5512.
Performing endodontic procedures can be tricky and technique-sensitive—so much so that many clinicians end up referring the work out to a specialist, losing valuable business.
Ultradent can help! Here are some guidelines to help you get the most out of your money while performing endodontic procedures in the safest way possible.
1. Test the Tip First
Before expressing any material into the canal, always express a bit onto a gloved finger, a glass slab, or a pad to ensure that there aren't blockages and that the consistency of the material is right. This will help prevent overexpression and possible penetration of the chemistry through the periapical tissue during the procedure.
2. Never Reuse an Endodontic Tip
For the safety and health of the patient, NaviTip tips should never be reused under any circumstances. Be gentle when navigating the root canal so as not to break a tip. Always handle tips with care to avoid dropping them on the floor. Doing this will help you avoid using more tips than necessary. Buying tips in bulk is another great strategy for getting the most out of your office's supply budget. Ultradent also offers frequent discounts during tradeshows, Black Friday, and throughout the year on many of its products, including Navitip tips. Take advantage of these discounts to run a more economical and financially successful practice without compromising the quality of your products or the well-being of your patients. You can sign up to receive Ultradent's email newsletter here, learn more about the Ultradent Elite loyalty program here, and/or follow Ultradent on Facebook to stay abreast of the latest deals and promotions!
3. Consider Using a Sideport Tip
One way to help prevent overexpressing a solution to the apical tissue is to use the NaviTip® 31 ga Double Sideport Irrigator tip. The double sideport technology directs the flow of irrigant laterally towards the canal wall, minimizing the possibility of expressing beyond the apex. Furthermore, the NaviTip Double Sideport tip has the world's smallest cannula, which makes canal irrigation even safer, allowing it to navigate even the smallest and most intricate spaces.
4. Pair the Right Chemistry with the Right Tip
One of the most important safety measures you can take when performing endodontics is pairing the right chemistries with the right tips. Luckily, Ultradent has taken the guesswork out of pairing tips with chemistries by carefully formulating each chemistry's viscosity for a preferred NaviTip tip. Quite literally, Ultradent's endodontic irrigants and NaviTip tips were made for each other. For example, Ultradent's MTAFlow™ repair cement is the only MTA repair cement on the market that can be expressed easily and smoothly through any of Ultradent's 29 ga NaviTip tip. Refer to this handy guide for pairing other chemistries with the correct tip for ease of use and safety:
Taking on endodontic cases doesn't have to be complicated or stressful! For more guidelines, techniques, and to learn more about Ultradent's award-winning, groundbreaking endodontic product line including its chemistries and NaviTip tips, visit ultradent.com.
Your patients are seeing it all over social media, television, and beauty blogs, so no wonder they're demanding whitening treatments that use some kind of light or laser! So, how do you educate them on the reality behind tooth whitening and the effectiveness products that use lights vs. those that do not? Ultradent to the rescue!
We sat down with Ultradent's technical manager over whitening, Peter Allred, to discuss how you can talk to and educate your patients about the pros, cons, and gimmicks when it comes to light/laser used in some whitening systems.
Peter Allred, Director, Formulation Technology
"The first and most important thing to help your patients understand is that the evidence from more than a dozen independent clinical trials shows that tooth whitening using lights or lasers will not improve whitening effect compared to quality whitening systems that don't require expensive additional equipment that add no value and simply increase the time and complexity of the treatment, and that this is a marketing tactic.1 Patients were introduced to the idea of light used whitening treatments years ago on shows like Extreme Makeover, and this has prevailed and stuck in the minds of patients when in reality, the light creates a very temporary whiter result, and can cause other negative side effects, including oral burns and pulpal stimulation," says Allred.
He continues, "Walk your patients through the fact that our oral tissues are always in a dark environment with limited light exposure, so when you introduce a continuous stream of very bright, high-intensity light, including UV and heat with some systems for a significant amount of time, this may not be good for your oral tissues."
How is it bad for oral tissues? Studies like one conducted by a team of doctors led by Dr. Ellen Bruzell of the Nordic Institute of Dental Materials concluded that not only did whitening with a light show no greater long-term whitening effects than without, but that "exposure to UV light created more exposed grooves which made the enamel surface of the teeth more vulnerable to stress and other related damage."Adding, "The use of UV light for teeth whitening puts patients at risk of high levels of radiation to sensitive areas. Bleeding gums, sunburn, and severely burnt gums are among the common complaints, not to mention the possibility of getting cataracts, cancer, and other life-threatening illnesses."2
UV Light tends to dehydrate the teeth, increasing sensitivity and leading to shade rebound after the teeth rehydrate.
Secondly, Allred adds, "lights used in many whitening systems simply dehydrate the teeth, which gives them a temporary whiter appearance It is not uncommon to find that many of these same patients experience a significant color rebound and in rare cases even return to the pre-treatment shade as their teeth fully rehydrate. Additionally, dehydration can be a factor in tooth sensitivity so the more dehydrated the patients' teeth are due to light exposure, the more relapse and sensitivity they are likely to experience. The good news is that there are safe and effective alternatives, without the use of a light. Truly, the only effective way to whiten teeth with the least risk of sensitivity and shade relapse is through prolonged exposure to pH stable and optimized active whitening agents on the tooth's surface. Opalescence® Boost®’s in-office whitening system provides brighter, whiter teeth after just about one hour in the chair, without the use of a light. The powerful, 40% hydrogen peroxide gel is chemically activated and contains a high water concentration to provide extra safeguards against dehydration and shade rebound.
Opalescence Boost in-office whitening offers patient's an in-office, dramatic whitening experience without the use of a light, helping patients to avoid unnecessary sensitivity.
Indeed, Allred says, "We don't recommend light or laser whitening because throughout our years of research, we've found that optimized whitening without lights or lasers is the safest, most effective way to a whiter smile and doesn't mislead the patient to thinking they ended up with one shade of white, only to experience extreme shade rebound a day or two later. Our products like Opalescence® Boost® in-office whitening, Opalescence® PF whitening, and Opalescence Go® take-home whitening produce beautiful, honest results that we're proud to stand by."
Click here for more about Opalescence Teeth Whitening Systems!
Opalescence Teeth Whitening Systems
1. Maran, M.M., et al (2018). In-office dental bleaching with light vs. without light: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of Dentistry, 70(2018) 1-13.
2. Bruzell, E.M., et al (2009). In vitro efficacy and risk for adverse effects of light-assisted tooth bleaching. Journal of Photochemical & Photobiological Sciences, 2009, 8, 377-385.
With a saturated market, competitive marketing campaigns, and the power of social media, dentists are finding it more challenging than ever to attract and retain loyal patients. Many find the prospect of launching full-fledge social media campaigns and spending their hard-earned dollars on advertising daunting. What many of these offices don't know is that the real secret to earning customer isn't in producing the best social media posts or a great billboard. It's all about customer service, and great customer service creates a great (and free!) word of mouth campaign that will bring far more customers through your door than you thought possible.
Here are a few steps to creating an outstanding customer experience that will set your practice apart, and in turn, increase your profits:
Establish a Customer Touchpoint Program
"When I talk to my clients, who are practicing dentists, I talk about aftercare in terms of a customer touchpoint program. To me, a customer touchpoint program is a 360-degree communication plan, and an aftercare call is just one of those points," says Valina Axelgard, a dental practice coach. She continues, "Other points in this 360-degree plan can include birthdays, anniversaries, special occasions that the patient mentions that you take note of, etc. "
In fact, Axelgard says a big way to make a lasting impression is to train your staff to listen to patients for mentions of their anniversaries or big milestones (graduations, retirements, etc.), mark it on the patient's calendar, set an alert, and make sure to send a card acknowledging the occasion. "To me," says Axelgard, "this will definitely leave a lasting impression."
A well-timed greeting card acknowledging an important milestone or event in your patient's life is meaningful, personal, and creates a lasting impression that they'll pass on to friends and family.
The trick lies in establishing a system and a place to capture that information and ensuring that wherever that information is recorded, that there is a staff member or two assigned to checking and following up on the occasion alerts that pop up every day.
"If a practice can do this, and do it well and consistently," Axelgard says, "I've seen the residuals of it be a thousand-plus fold. You'll have patients telling their friends and family, 'My dentist sent me a card for my 50th anniversary!' Because that kind of service and follow-up is so rare in this day and age, it will not only absolutely wow them, but it will win you their loyalty for life."
Establishing a system where important patient details are documented empowers you and your staff to deliver incredible customer service to every patient at every appointment.
She goes on, "I often ask my clients what impressive care means to them, and they'll talk about how they have a hair stylist who gives them free scalp massages at each appointment or about someone who details their car and goes the extra mile. It's these seemingly insignificant—the key word being 'seemingly'—details that in fact, make a huge difference. And if you're taking care of your patients in impressive ways, they're going to return the favor and take care of you with loyalty, referrals, follow-through, and their trust, which is invaluable."
Get to Know Your Patients
Roger Levin, another practice management expert, also suggests making small changes or implementing little things to make a big difference in your patients' experience. He suggests beginning every patient interaction with something personal (yet appropriate) before getting down to business. An example of this could include follow-up questions from something they told you during their last visit, like "How's the new job treating you?" "How did your 5K race go?" "Are you getting excited for your upcoming Hawaii trip?" This requires dentists and staff to commit details about each patient (at least one new detail per appointment) to memory or make a note of it in the patient's file so they can bring it up the next time they see the patient.
Make Your Practice a Relaxing, Soothing Environment
A few other customer service improvements that can put your dental practice over the top include offering aromatherapy in the office, offering patients a post-treatment hot-towel therapy, offering noise-reducing or noise-cancelling headphones during long procedures that involve drilling, and investing in comfortable seat cushions and treatment chairs. He also suggests putting a small beverage area in the waiting room of the practice so your patients can sip on something healthy while they wait to be called back.
Make Follow-Up Calls
Lastly, never underestimate how much your patients will appreciate straight-forward treatment options and clear communication. And just like those special phone calls for an anniversary or birthday, make sure to call every patient one to two days after their appointment to make sure they're feeling good and don't have any post-treatment pain or soreness.
Make sure to establish a system where every patient receives a follow-up call one to two days after their appointment to make sure they're not experiencing any post-visit discomfort.
The value of exceptional customer service, even in a dental practice setting, cannot be overestimated. It's little details, implemented every day, with every patient, that will build and multiply your patient load and practice profits. Try it and you'll see. Make the patient king, and your practice shall reign supreme!
Click here more dental practice management tips from this series.
To learn more about Ultradent products, or to find more tips, tricks, our hear about our humanitarian work, and more, visit The Arch: The Ultradent Blog.
If you’ve ever logged onto Pinterest or any other social media platform, you’ve no doubt seen some of the many trends, tricks, and recipes for easy, cheap, “at-home teeth whitening” treatments.
We’ve invited esthetic dentist, Dr. Jaimeé Morgan, to discuss some of these popular at-home teeth whitening remedies to let us know what works, what doesn’t, what is safe, and what to avoid.
Brushing with activated charcoal leaves big mess, but does it work?
Dr. Jaimeé Morgan: "My big question is “why?” There’s no science to show that brushing one’s teeth with activated charcoal is better, safer, or more effective than toothpaste. Additionally, it’s a widely known problem among dentists that brushing your teeth with activated charcoal a big mess, but it also likes to settle at the gingival margins. My hygienists then have to go in and scrape it out from the patient’s gum line. It’s very difficult to get out! In fact, my office manager and hygienist gave brushing with activated charcoal paste a whirl and the results weren’t great, to say the least. We even used a plaque indicator after she brushed with the charcoal paste to show us how effective the paste was and the pictures speak for themselves."
As you can see, after brushing with activated charcoal and rinsing, difficult to remove charcoal residue is left in the patient’s gingival margins and on the patient's teeth. Dr. Morgan applied plaque indicator to the patients’ teeth after rinsing to show the effectiveness of the charcoal. The purple residue indicates leftover plaque on the patient’s teeth.
The only substance proven to actually whiten tooth enamel color is peroxide—both hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide. Although the abrasiveness of the charcoal may help remove existing stains, it cannot actually lighten the color of the tooth. In fact, patients that brush with charcoal risk abrading their enamel too much—something that cannot be repaired once damaged. Furthermore, many people that brush with activated charcoal may experience a kind of illusion that their teeth are in fact whiter due to the contrast of the black charcoal residue (often left in the gums and between the teeth because it is very difficult to remove). This contrast, comparable to wearing a bright red lipstick with blue undertones that makes the teeth appear whiter, is simply a trick that the color of the substance plays on the eye when its placed next to the teeth. Skip the charcoal and go straight for the peroxide or gentle abrasion whitening toothpastes like
Opalescence® Whitening Toothpaste, which removes surface stains without damaging or scratching the enamel, along with a professional whitening system like
Opalescence® Boost® in-office whitening or Opalescence Go® take-home whitening for guaranteed sparkling results!
Oil pulling, or swishing coconut oil around in the mouth and between the teeth for 20 minutes, has become a popular fad for cleansing and whitening teeth. Dr. Jaimeé Morgan put it to the test.
Dr. Jaimeé Morgan: "Oil pulling, or swishing coconut oil around in your mouth for an extended amount of time, has been touted by some as a means to kill bacteria, remove plaque, freshen breath, and whiten teeth. But it takes 20 minutes! How are people supposed to fit this into their busy schedules? It’s easier to brush for three minutes, which would be more effective anyway. Also, if oil pulling is supposed to whiten the teeth and remove plaque, shouldn’t it be effective in removing the staining from the activated charcoal experiment as well as plaque and plaque indicator? We tried it, and after brushing with activated charcoal, applying plaque indicator, and oil pulling, the staining, plaque, and charcoal residue were all still present at the gumline. A toothbrush and a good toothpaste, like Opalescence Whitening Toothpaste, would have done a far better job."
The 3,000 year-old Ayurvedic practice of oil pulling (swishing a tablespoon of oil such as coconut or safflower oil around in the mouth for 20 minutes or so) is theoretically supposed to cleanse the teeth and gums of bacteria by clinging to the cell membranes in the mouth and when discarded (or, spit out), the bad bacteria in the mouth is claimed to go down the drain along with the oil. It’s also said to whiten teeth, improve breath, reduce headaches, clear the skin, and increase energy. Sounds like magic, right? Does it work? Well, the answer is…we don’t know. There is no data to prove or disprove the benefits of consistent oil pulling. All purported benefits are supported by purely anecdotal evidence. On the contrary, there’s plenty of data and studies to support the fact that brushing and flossing regularly, visiting the dentist, and whitening with a professional, dentist-supervised whitening system like Ultradent’s
Opalescence Boost in-office whitening treatment or
Opalescence Go take-home whitening are not only proven effective, but also safe. Why waste time on unproven methods when you can stick to the science behind what really works?
Dr. Morgan warns against brushing with baking soda and lemon juice, as it could damage the enamel if the pH balance isn’t right.
Dr. Jaimeé Morgan: "Baking soda is basic, and lemon juice is acidic, so they could cancel each other out if mixed properly. However, there is the danger that if not mixed properly the acid in the lemon juice could damage the enamel of the tooth, or the abrasiveness of the baking soda could take a toll on the enamel. For patients who like the odor-canceling properties of baking soda, I would advise them to mix it with water and swish with it rather than brush with it." To show the danger of exposing teeth to lemon juice (let alone brushing with it!), Dr. Morgan shared a photo with us of one of her patients who likes to suck on lemons:
This patient experienced significant enamel damage as a result of this habit! Brushing with a homemade mixture of baking soda and lemon juice could prove not only highly damaging for the enamel, but also lead to sensitivity and tooth decay as the acid encourages a pH inside the mouth that fosters bacteria growth. We highly advise against this DIY trend! Sure, the baking soda may prove harmless, but using a minty toothpaste like Opalescence Whitening Toothpaste is sure to taste and work a lot better! And again, DO NOT brush with lemon juice. It's just a bad idea all around. The goal is to help improve your oral health, not damage it!
Dr. Morgan recommends forgetting about these at-home teeth whitening fads and simply brushing consistently with Opalescence Whitening Toothpaste. Instead of risking enamel damage, Dr. Morgan had her patient brush with Opalescence Whitening Toothpaste to remove the remaining charcoal and plaque indicator, with sparkling results!
For more information on healthy and effective professional tooth whitening, visit us at
"A New York Times article in 1983 predicted that tooth decay would be eradicated by the turn of the century," says Dr. Marielle Pariseau, a dentist and the founder of Teeth First, a social impact organization dedicated to actually accomplishing what the New York Times so wrongly predicted over 30 years ago. "Here we are in 2019," she points out, "and tooth decay in children is still the number one childhood disease! Our models for prevention that were created last century aren't working. We MUST rethink how and where children and young adults are taught oral health prevention and hygiene."
Dr. Pariseau doesn't just talk the talk, she walks the walk.
Twenty years ago, as a practicing dentist, she says she distinctly remembers feeling bothered by the fact that she was only serving people who could afford to come see her as patients. Even then, she felt a yearning to make a difference for people—especially children—who couldn't afford to come in. She says, "I'm a tooth lover. I always say that I'm a dentist with the soul of a tooth fairy."
It's that seed that a few years down the road compelled her to create the Teeth First organization. She says, "Knowledge is power, and most kids—with the exception of a few—attend school, so what better place than in schools could we teach young children good habits early on?"
Teeth First does just that. The organization, with Dr. Pariseau at its helm, consists of implementing supervised brushing and flossing programs in kindergarten classrooms in predominately Title One schools, which are schools that contain a high number of children living in poverty. This often means that those children are also at the highest risk of not visiting a dentist on a regular basis.
However, it's not just kindergarteners that Teeth One targets. The organization also has a second-grade program in Title One elementary schools that aims to not only teach proper brushing and flossing techniques, but to delve deeper into the whys and hows behind tooth decay, and what to do beyond brushing and flossing to ensure good oral health. It also teaches the basic science surrounding why it's important to develop good oral health habits. "I believe that reaching kids early and teaching them these basic things in kindergarten and elementary schools can give them the opportunity to live a healthier life and future that is cavity free, pain free, and that is a lot less expensive than if they suffered from preventable dental diseases that as adults, they may not have the funds to treat. It is all about prevention at an early age," says Dr. Pariseau of her ultimate mission, which she says in a nutshell, is, "a cavity-free future."
Through her advocacy and work, Dr. Marielle Pariseau has become well-known in Utah, where she recently spoke at TedXSaltLakeCity event, and was even invited as a featured lecturer at one of Ultradent's recent summits.
Ultradent happily donates to and supports Dr. Pariseau's paradigm-breaking work, providing the toothbrushes and toothpastes to her school programs.
In fact, just two weeks ago, several Ultradent team members attended one of Dr. Pariseau's 2nd grade presentations as part of National Children's Dental Health Month. They were able to participate in and observe Teeth First's interactive program created by Dr. Pariseau herself.
In the 2nd grade workshop, the kids participate in a 20-minute interactive PowerPoint discussion where they ask and answer questions and try to figure out a secret code embedded into the presentation that has to do with taking care of the teeth. "They also focus on learning about good and bad bacteria, and how important it is to make smart food choices in order to feed the good bacteria in their mouth, not the bad," says Dr. Pariseau.
This leads seamlessly into an exercise where the children must classify and rank real beverages on a table in the room that range from unsweetened almond milk to Coca-Cola and everything in between. Of the application, Dr. Pariseau says, "The catch that always stumps the children is that the sodas on the table aren't the beverages with the most sugar. It's actually the fruit juice with 'no sugar added' that contains the most sugar." She adds, "Another thing I throw into the mix is a can of tomato soup. It actually contains a lot more sugar than many people, including adults, realize."
The students then take part in a brushing and flossing exercise, which includes a demonstration of proper brushing technique on a large stuffed dinosaur. The students are timed while they brush and floss to ensure they are spending enough time on the top and bottom arches to properly clean their teeth.
Then, Dr. Pariseau says, "I always end the presentation with a slide that shows a hummingbird drinking orange soda through a straw. On that slide, it says 'sweet drinks are only good for hummingbirds,' and I explain to them that hummingbirds don't have any teeth and they have a high metabolism! It's mostly a way of teaching them that sweet drinks aren't good for me, they're not good for them, they're not good for anyone! They're only good for hummingbirds," she chuckles.
With her Teeth First organization, Dr. Pariseau hopes to start a growing revolution and to, as stated earlier, "create a cavity-free future." She firmly believes this goal will only be reached if dental hygiene and oral care is taught in schools. She says, "Oral health is everyone's responsibility and the integration of oral health education into elementary schools must happen." Dr. Pariseau invites you to join her mission by visiting teethfirst.org.
Click here to learn more about Ultradent's humanitarian relief efforts.
Perhaps you've heard the adage, "If it wasn't documented, it wasn't done."
It's a sage piece of advice given by practice management gurus like Dr. Leslie Pasco and renowned dental practice management consultant, Barry Levin. But what exactly does documentation encompass? What should be documented? Is documentation primarily to protect yourself from lawsuits?
The answers might surprise you.
First of all, although great documentation and good notes can indeed serve as the first line of protection against litigation for doctors, nurses, hygienists, and dentists, they serve a much wider purpose than that, and if they're not done correctly, consistently, and professionally, poor notes and documentation can even prove detrimental to a practice.
Here are a few of our favorite tips surrounding good notes and documentation that will help your 2019 dental practice get off to a smooth start:
First Document Policies and Expectations
Let's discuss the side of documentation that is least talked about in dental practices: systems and policies documentation. Valina Axelgard, dental business coach says, "I often go into my clients' practices and ask 'What's your financial policy?', only to find that it's not written down anywhere, and if it's not written down, it's not set in stone. Documenting your financial policy, patient cancellation policies, and employee policies is absolutely essential for the success and the bottom line of a practice. In fact, if you don't know your systems well enough to be able to document them, then no one else will either and that leads to miscommunication, inconsistent practices, and room for a wide range of mistakes." She adds, "If patients and employees don't know what's expected of them, how can they be successful? Documenting systems and expectations in a clear and transparent way sets everyone around you—both your staff and your patients—up for success."
Consent and Case Acceptance
Good notes promote continuity of care through clear communication, demonstrate quality of care delivered, and provide evidence necessary for any legal proceedings. Conversely, poor records have a negative impact on care delivery and clinical decision making.
Unfortunately, record keeping and documentation often become a low priority for busy dentists and hygienists and staff.
The most important thing to document when it comes to a patient is consent and case acceptance. "This includes case refusal or refusal of treatment," says Barry Levin. "While a dentist will recommend the best course of action, it remains the choice of the patient whether or not to follow the advice. If a patient does not follow the recommendations of a dentist, it is extremely important for the dentist to make a detailed note of the event in the patient's records. Record the details of the discussion with the patient about the potential benefits and risks associated with the proposed treatment. Clearly explain the reasons given by the patient for refusing treatment in the patient's file," Levin adds.
Documenting consent, case acceptance, and case refusal ensures that you're doing exactly what the patient wants and never going out of bounds. It protects both parties and is always a win/win.
Don't Leave Documentation Until the End of the Day
"There are cases that oftentimes require dentists and staff to go back to notes from previous visits for appropriate continuity of care. These notes can also be essential tools for communicating with insurance companies to get coverage, but too often note-taking and documentation happens after you've seen a day's worth of patients. At this point, many important and often crucial details are lost," says Valina Axelgard.
She coaches her dental offices to form a habit of taking a moment during or after each patient visit to record case notes and details and to not procrastinate them until after the next patient or at the end of the day. She promises this will save you on more than one occasion in the long run!
Stick with the Facts
As mentioned previously, although patient notes serve a wide purpose, they're often the first source of evidence and line of defense for clinicians when faced with the unfortunate event of malpractice litigation. Thus, Barry Levin says, "It is imperative that nothing in a patient record can be viewed in the wrong context. To avoid embarrassment, liability, or the need for uncomfortable explanations, keep patient records as objective as possible. This means keeping them clinical in nature." Levin adds, "Criticizing comments or witty remarks should never be included in a patient record. Any prejorative content on a patients' record will always be brought up in litigation, and will always look unprofessional on the clinician's part."
Another Levin tip? "Keep in mind that dissatisfied patients require the highest level of care and documentation because they pose the highest risk of making a claim against the dental practice. Keep your best and most thorough notes on the patients that you might privately consider a 'squeaky wheel.'"
Ensure Notes Are Professional and Consistent
The ADA Center for Professional Success says, "Patient records are a vital part of your practice. Among other things, they contain information about the patient's treatment plan and care that has been delivered. Dental records are especially important when submitting dental benefit claims or responding to lawsuits."
Barry Levin, a dental practice management expert, says, "the importance of documentation cannot be overstated." Dental practices are required by law to produce and maintain adequate patient records. Failure to do so can expose the practice to significant risks and liabilities. In addition, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and many other laws and regulations require the retention of records for varying periods of time.
Clear, organized, and detailed dental records are necessary to provide patients with the best care possible. Moreover, a dental practice's records may be used in a court of law in connection with the prosecution and/or defense of malpractice claims or other civil lawsuits. As a result, here are certain "best practices" that should be considered in connection with the creation, maintenance, and destruction of patient records.
Carefully Correct Documentation Mistakes
Here's a useful tip many clinicians fail to consider: Never delete, erase, or white out entries on a patient's official document. According to Levin, "These actions can be misconstrued as evidence of improper alternation." Instead, he recommends correcting mistakes by drawing a single line through any error with a date and initial next to the mistake before writing out the correction.
Avoid Perception of Bias by Separating Financial Records from Patient Records
Avoid mixing a patient's financial information and insurance coverage data with their patient and clinical notes. This protects the clinician from giving the incorrect impression that any bias came into play during diagnosis, evaluation, and treatment options presentation. This also protects your patients' financial information from being passed along irresponsibly or without their permission should they request that their records be transferred elsewhere.
We hope these tips will help you develop great documentation habits for your dental practice throughout 2019 and into the future. These guidelines ensure the best care and protection for the doctor, staff, and patients. It may seem simple, but it's often the simple things that become lifesavers in tight situations.
Stay tuned for more practice management tips throughout the year here on The Arch: The Ultradent Blog!
Choosing the right sectional matrix ring might seem like a simple task. After all, it's just a little ring, right? Could there be much difference between the wide array of options out there for dentists to choose from? How difficult could it really be?
Two things: It doesn't have to be difficult, and yes, there are, in fact, large differences between all of those little sectional matrix rings!
You may have considerations, like: Is the ring high or low profile? How long are the tines? What are their shapes? How durable is it? Will it get misshapen after a few uses? Are its tines soft or hard? How well does it hold the matrix band in place? Is it versatile enough to work with varying types of restorations?
All of these factors and more were scrutinized and taken into careful consideration in the creation of the Triodent® V3 Ring, making it a go-to for doctors like world-renowned dentist and lecturer Dr. Mike Miyasaki, who says he uses the Triodent V3 Ring for "95% of my restorations." Preparations, as dentists know, come in all sizes and shapes and the V3 Ring can be used with ease in almost every case a clinician is bound to encounter.
Here are some of the reasons why the Triodent V3 sectional matrix ring outperforms the competition:
Hard, Anatomically V-Shaped Tines:
Specially designed with V-shaped tines and made of glass fiber-reinforced, hard plastic, the V3 sectional matrix ring won't collapse the matrix band around a wide-box restoration, destroying its anatomy. The hard V3 Ring tines grip to the very tips of the tooth, creating stability on the undercut of the tooth, and their anatomical design allows for larger purchase points and greater stability on the tooth.
The V3 Ring is effective even on a very large or wide preparation, provided there is still a little tooth structure at the gingival margin. In fact, the V3 Ring's sturdy frame sits around the prep and the matrix band forms to its shape, while the ring's V-shaped tines straddle the tooth and remaining structure, allowing clinicians to create a beautiful, naturally shaped restoration without collapsed matrix bands and other headaches.
The Triodent V3 Sectional Matrix Ring features a much lower profile in height and width than many popular competitor rings on the market. This proves to be a huge advantage, especially when performing an MOD, as the ring's low profile allows it to be stacked and butterflied comfortably and easily—even for patients with a narrow mouth—resulting in a beautiful restoration while keeping the patient at ease.
Ring Creates Interproximal Separation:
Many clinicians rely on the wedges in their sectional matrix system to create interproximal separation, which can often require placing numerous wedges to achieve the optimal space desired. This makes for, potentially, a very uncomfortable and unpleasant experience for the patient, in addition to using more of the clinician's valuable time than necessary. The V3 Ring exerts optimal separation force on the teeth to produce consistently tight contacts without sacrificing time or patient comfort. Because the V3 Ring exerts the separating force, the Triodent® Wave-Wedge is able to act as a sealing wedge to reduce voids and achieve better restorations.
The nickel-titanium makeup of the V3 Ring has exceptional strength for stability and outstanding spring strength that keeps its tension and shape without stretching out. It is also fully autoclavable for reuse, again and again.
Sets the Bar and Stands the Test of Time:
The introduction of the award-winning V3 Ring sets the bar for sectional matrix rings everywhere with its unique V-shaped tines that grip the tooth and provide exceptional stability. Its wide indications for use, outstanding spring and elastasticity, optimal force for tooth separation, and ability to create natural anatomical contours without collapsing the matrix makes it an industry leader. Even though the V3 Ring has many notable competitors, it remains a leader globaly thanks to its versatility, unique low profile and optimal design.
To learn more about the Triodent V3 Ring and the Triodent V3 Sectional Matrix System, click here!
Ultradent is making many efforts to support local humanitarian initiatives in and around the South Jordan and Salt Lake City area. Though Salt Lake City boasts some of Utah's most majestic beauty and a pristine reputation, the valley continues its struggle to support and assist the homeless population found in many parts of the valley and the downtown area. One of these efforts includes the
Fourth Street Clinic, a special practice located downtown that is 100% dedicated to providing health and dental care for the homeless and those who live below the poverty line.
One of Ultradent's core values is
Care. Care for our coworkers, families, customers, and community plays a part in all that we do. In an effort to put this core value into action, Ultradent started a special holiday tradition a few years ago that brings a lot of joy to our company family, many of whom are grateful for the opportunity to take part in acts of generosity during the holiday season.
Each year, the Ultradent's humanitarian division, also known as the
Heart of Ultradent, gathers boxes of toothbrushes, toothpaste, and other supplies. They then visit places around the Salt Lake Valley, including the
Fourth Street Clinic and numerous homeless shelters and road homes, delivering these essential hygiene supplies to those in need.
Ultradent truly believes that full body health starts in the mouth, and seeing the smiles on the faces of people who have fallen on hard times when they receive their new toothbrush and a tube of
Opalescence® toothpaste truly brightens our holiday season. The opportunity to serve offers a reminder of how much we take for granted in the hustle and bustle of life—especially around the holidays.
Indeed, as Dr. Fischer says, it is only with a hand open to give that we can receive. What we receive from taking a day out of our lives to serve those facing untold challenges in our own backyard is a feeling of brotherly love, gratitude, and perspective that truly sets the tone for what the holidays are really about.
To learn more about the Heart of Ultradent or to obtain support for a dental humanitarian mission of your own, visit us
You can also follow Heart of Ultradent and the many missions and initiatives it supports—seeing photos and hearing stories from dentists and people all over the world on
We hope you have a wonderful 2019 and we look forward to finding more ways to give back and to support those whose efforts make the world a better place throughout the year. Stay tuned for more
humanitarian stories to come!
Ultradent has a legacy of superb training and continuing education that has been a part of the company's mission from the very beginning. In fact, because of his passion for training and education, Dr. Fischer, Ultradent's founder and CEO, would travel to trade shows and dental exhibits all over the world demonstrating and teaching. Sometimes he would even draw blood from his own arm to show the scrubbing and burnishing technique required to achieve profound hemostasis with his revolutionary products, Astringedent® hemostatic and the Metal Dento-Infusor® tip.
Since then, Ultradent has continued to raise the bar in continuing education by selecting the very best doctors from around the world to teach seminars and host lectures year-round at both destination venues and smaller regional locations. Ultradent ensures that no matter where you might live, you have access to world-class seminars. Here are a few to mark on your calendars:
Hawaii Destination Seminar, February 27 – March 3, 2019
Drs. Michael Miyasaki and Renato Miotto Palo on the gorgeous Big Island of Hawaii for courses centering around tooth whitening, diode lasers, bonding, and minimally invasive restorative techniques while earning 12 CE credits and soaking up the sun. Click here to learn more about the courses and destination event, and
click here to register online.
Seattle, Washington, February 1, 2019
World-renowned endodontic researcher and lecturer, Dr. Carlos Spironelli Ramos, will be teaching a course on contemporary endodontics covering the benefits and limitations of reciprocation and rotation, the importance of file design and how this aspect can improve instrumentation results, how to determine working length electronically, and how to master an intuitive two-file instrumentation technique. The event offers 7 CE credits and will take place at the Sheraton Grand Hotel on 6thAvenue.
Click here to learn more and register.
Mars, Pennsylvania, February 8, 2019
This exciting course, entitled "Esthetic Dentistry with Composites: Achieving Great Results and Longevity is Easier Than You May Think," offers 7 CE credits and will be taught by international dental lecturer, Dr. Rafael Beolchi. Dr. Beolchi will share his secrets to stress-free placement of anterior composites, new keys for short and long-term success with adhesion and photo curing, how to reduce clinical stress by improving case predictability, and how to simplify composite layering techniques in a new, innovative way. Early-bird registration ($199) will be offered until January 22nd, and then registration will be $299.
Click here to learn more and register.
Edison, New Jersey, February 15, 2019
Dr. Ron Kaminer, esteemed clinician and dental lecturer, will headline "Minimally Invasive Endodontics: Streamlining Endo and Associated Procedures." This course will discuss how a simple understanding of the anatomy of the tooth can make endodontic treatments easier. He will also teach a simple step-by-step approach to cleaning and instrumenting canals, the differences between sealants, and teach a five-minute post and core procedure. This course offers 7 CE credits and will take place at the Sheraton Edison Hotel.
Learn more and register here.
Jacksonville, Florida, February 15, 2019
Dr. Jaimeé Morgan, a sought-out esthetic dentist, will be at the helm of this course entitled "The Real Beauty of Composite Resins: Esthetic, Durable, Profitable." The course offers 7 CE credits and will take place at Jacksonville's Hyatt Regency Hotel. Dr. Morgan will be teaching attendees how to improve their cases by integrating whitening, tissue management, and gingival sculpting, and will share new concepts for placement of anterior and posterior composite resin restorations. She will also cover time-saving techniques that reduce work stress, increase profitability, and help patients avoid post-operative sensitivity.
West Harrison, New York, February 22, 2019
You're in for a treat with a masterful clinician and lecturer, Dr. Shea Bess, and his course,"My Keys to Dental Success: The Art of Dentistry Without Being an Artist, Clinical Hacks, Mastering Tough Conversations" (6 CE credits). Dr. Bess will teach his innovative protocol for achieving quality bond strengths every time, simple techniques for creating artful composite restorations for the non-artsy dentist, and never-fail tips for making perfect impressions the first time. He also candidly discusses which products and materials to save on, and when and why it's important to invest in others. You don't want to miss this! To get early bird pricing ($199) until January 22nd, or to register afterwards for $299
Santa Barbara, California, March 8, 2019
Join Dr. Renato Leonardo, a sought-after endodontic expert, for "Streamlining Your Root Canal Treatments" in beautiful Santa Barbara. You will learn the benefits and limitations of reciprocation and rotation, the importance of file design and how it can improve instrumentation results, how to determine working length electronically, and an intuitive, easy two-file instrumentation technique that will change the way you approach endodontics.
Call 800.520.6640 to register for the 7 CE credit course today!
Columbus, Ohio, March 8, 2019
Dr. John Flucke, a widely published and sought-out dental clinician and lecturer, will teach "Predictable, Low-Stress Endodontics for the General Practitioner." This course offers 7 CE credits and will give instruction on proper case selection, diagnostic techniques, isolation tips and tricks, and revolutionary instrumentation techniques. Dr. Flucke's personality and expertise make every CE course he teaches an event to remember.
Call 800.520.6640 to register.
Hartford, Connecticut, March 8, 2019
Get 12 CE credits when you attend Dr. John Graeber's course, "Components of Standard Level Laser Certification," which covers dental laser fundamentals as well as an in-person lecture and hands-on full-day program, divided into two modules (the first module is done at home at your leisure).
To learn more click here or
call 800.520.6600 to register for this $999 course today!
“The thing about handling when it comes to composite is that you just don’t want to have to think about it,” says Dr. Shea Bess, a full-time practicing dentist and country-wide dental lecturer. “It’s one of those things that you really don’t notice or consider until it’s a problem…and then it’s a big problem. The goal is for the composite you’re using to be so seamlessly workable that you don’t need extra products or tricks to get it to go where you want easily, stay put, not slump, not stick, not crumble, and not drag or pull. You shouldn’t have to worry about those things when you’re with your patient.”
When it comes to composite, Dr. Bess has quite a bit of experience. "I've used and tried a lot of different composites over the years. I think many companies find it tricky when it comes to getting the consistency and handling of a composite right. It can be very tricky and also, a matter of personal preference." He continues, "I personally do not like when a composite is soft and sticky and you have to buy wetting resin or, as we were taught in dental school, to dip your glove in bonding agent and then tap your instrument against the bonding agent so the composite won't stick. That's just adding another product to your process and adding bonding agent on the top layer of the composite puts the composite at risk."
He adds, "Now, even more than a sticky, too-soft composite, I really don't like when a composite is too firm and it's difficult to manipulate. It dries up and sometimes even crumbles. For me, my personal preference for a composite is a happy medium between those two extremes of soft and firm."
Dr. Bess says he finally found that in Ultradent's
Mosaic universal composite, which he says, struck the perfect "happy medium,"—meaning it's non-sticky, workable, doesn't drag, slump, or dry up—"It's been a game-changer!"
It turns out, another renowned dentist we spoke to feels the same way.
Dr. Hal Stewart, a clinician and lecturer out of Dallas, Texas, says of Mosaic composite’s handling, “I’ve been placing direct composite for over 25 years. Ultradent’s
Mosaic composite has excellent handling properties which makes it exceptional for placement in the esthetic zone. In addition to that, it’s accurate and the intuitive shade guide/matching system makes direct anterior restoration placement predictable and the esthetic results are exquisite. I use it every day in my practice.”
Dr. Shea Bess agrees with Dr. Stewart on Mosaic composite's intuitive shade matching as well, saying, "I love using Mosaic composite not only for its excellent handling, but also because for a dentist like me who isn't an artist, the shade system is simple, easy to follow, and when I've completed my restoration, you can't distinguish between the composite restoration and the rest of the tooth when they leave. They blend perfectly and the restoration is virtually undetectable." He adds, "The handling of Mosaic composite and its color matching system has brought my esthetic work to the next level. It's really been a game-changer. It's really nice to finish a composite and not have the patient be able to see it or pick it out when they leave. Before Mosaic composite came out, I had a hard time hiding my composite, and now it's easy. It's made handling and shade matching a no-stress, easy process for me."
To learn more, or to try out Mosaic composite for yourself, click here!
Here at Ultradent, we've spent countless hours finding the most luxurious locales, curating the most fascinating and engaging speakers, and creating experiences through our destination seminars that aren't just "homework" for our clinicians and their teams who attend, but experiences that they look forward to and remember forever.
One of these seminars is our coveted Hawaii Oceanside Retreat Seminar, scheduled this coming year for February 27–March 3, 2019, featuring two world- renowned key opinion leader (KOL) lecturers, Dr. Mike Miyasaki and Dr. Renato Miotto Palo. We sat down with both doctors to discuss what attendees can expect from their lectures, and the secret reason destination seminars like this can enhance your career even after the classes have ended.
Dr. Mike Miyasaki, who will be presenting on "The Clinical Application of the Two 'Faces' of the Gemini Laser," as well as "Principle-Based Comprehensive Dentistry Restored Esthetically," is one of the most sought-after KOL lecturers when it comes to lasers and esthetic dentistry. With over 30 years in practice and a seasoned educator, Dr. Miyasaki brings an engaging, accessible style that every clinician can relate to. Of the seminar and what he'll be presenting, Dr. Miyasaki says, "I'm excited to cover two of my favorite topics—the placement of bonded restorations and the use of soft-tissue diode lasers in various restorative procedures. Success in adhesive dentistry depends on completing a lot of steps correctly and choosing the correct materials, and I believe my presentations will bring some insight and clarity to this process. Patients consider the use of a laser by their dentist as one of the best high-tech procedures available and the information I will be presenting will demonstrate how and why this is true."
Miyasaki adds, "I'm looking forward to presenting because the information I included in these two presentation are things that I think can really change the success my colleagues have in their practices when doing a single-unit direct posterior, an anterior restoration, or a larger indirect case. When it comes to lasers, we'll also delve into how the laser works, and I think this makes learning a system of its kind easy to understand and apply. I can't tell you how many colleagues of mine have a laser that they aren't using to its fullest capacity, or who might be interested in lasers, but don't know what to look for in a laser unit. I'm hoping people who attend the Hawaii Seminar, will come away from it armed with all of this knowledge and more."
Dr. Renato Miotto Palo, another renowned lecturer, will be presenting at the Hawaii seminar on the topic "Tooth Whitening Today—How to Achieve Predictability." He says, "I'm looking forward to sharing the information I've gleaned from my practice and 15 years of tooth whitening research to give attendees great options for getting great whitening results. I really hope the doctors that come leave feeling like the things they learn in my course are things they can apply the very next day in their practice."
Dr. Miotto added, "I choose to lecture on whitening for Ultradent because of the longstanding reputation for quality and stability that Opalescence Whitening Systems has gained. I truly believe they provide the longest-lasting, highest quality results for the patients, and I will demonstrate that in my lectures."
As a fellow clinician, Dr. Miyasaki often encourages other denstists to attend destination seminars like Ultradent's Hawaii Seminar, because "An event like a destination seminar in Hawaii is enjoyable because the atmosphere is relaxed and we have multiple days to interact both during the meeting and after the courses. I always find that the secret weapon to these types of events are fabulous networking opportunities they provide for all attendees, including the lecturers themselves in the downtime between and after the classes are over."
Click here to register today and earn up to 10 CE credits, while basking in the Hawaiian sun, mingling and networking with the lecturers and clinicians in attendance, and creating lasting memories.
What's the best thing you bought on Black Friday?
What's the craziest thing that happened to you on Black Friday?
What's the earliest you woke up for Black Friday?
Good luck shoppers! Happy Black Friday!
Here’s wishing you a wonderful and bounteous Thanksgiving holiday from our table to yours!
Neil Jessop, Ultradent's Vice President of Research and Development, recently spoke about the evolution of the VALO curing light. "There's a sense of urgency that I constantly feel to keep an eye on what is right and on staying advanced. It's not a free ride." Ever innovating, Ultradent most recently released the VALO® Grand curing light, which offers a 50% larger lens that measures a whopping 12 mm. This larger lens allows clinicians to cover and cure an entire restoration with the light's highly efficient 395 nm–480 nm LEDs. The story behind the VALO light's development, however, started over two decades ago, in 1997.
Neil Jessop recalls, "My connection to the VALO light started a long, long time ago, way before Ultradent even offered a curing light. In the late nineties we were conducting a lot of bonding studies, and the only kind of curing light offered on the market at the time was a quartz-halogen curing light. They were big and bulky, which made it difficult to access restorations in the interior of the mouth, and they were also incredibly fragile and not completely dependable. We, as a company, set out to create our own curing light just when blue LED light chips began to appear on keychains and small gadgets. We found them incredibly intriguing because blue LEDs, unlike red LEDs, which have been around since the 1960s, don't generate heat. Using blue LEDs would eliminate the requirement for cooling fans, which only add to the bulk of a curing light."
That's when Ultradent released the UltraLume LED curing light. Over the next few years, the company would go through several iterations of the UltraLume—continually improving on the last. "Over the years, we collected more and more information about LEDs until we got to the point where even though we knew that the UltraLume light was a huge step for not just the company but the dental industry—in that it was the first LED curing light on the market—we knew we could create something even better," adds Jessop. "We decided to begin the process of creating a whole new light with new branding because it would be so different from anything we offered."
Jessop continues, "We put a good three strong years into research, and after creating numerous prototypes and going through an intense process of trial and error, we released our VALO curing light in 2009, which we were really proud of."
Because Ultradent is a vertically minded and vertically integrated company (we do our own research and development, manufacturing, marketing, selling, etc.), the company took on the challenge of manufacturing the VALO curing light in-house. As part of its unique design, the company decided that the light would be manufactured and milled out of a single bar of aircraft-grade aluminum, which not only gave the VALO curing light its modern look, but also made it incredibly durable and difficult to break, thanks to its unibody construction. This solved another age-old problem with the other curing lights on the market.
The VALO curing light immediately set itself apart, including one very unexpected feature. "One of the things that made the VALO light different from any other curing light at the time was the fact that we kept it corded. We did it this way because cordless curing lights, until then, had been known for being very expensive and hard to find batteries for. We wanted dentists to be able to rely on their curing light and not encounter that problem and we hadn't found a way to solve that issue yet, so we kept it corded," he says. "Not having a battery in the unit also made the VALO light lighter, sleeker, and smaller."
Jessop recounts, "After we released the VALO Corded light, we began the process of developing the VALO cordless light, with the mission of making the batteries easily accessible [not exclusive to the VALO curing light] and low-cost. We discovered that we could use the same type of battery that is found in many digital cameras and other small devices."
Thus, Ultradent introduced their VALO Cordless curing light. "I think the cordless light really spoke to our customers and showed them that we were in tune with them, we were catering to their needs, and that we were really listening." Jessop says. "It really carved out a space for us in the curing light industry that had not been served and I'm so proud of our entire team for their hard work and innovation and the great lengths they went to make sure that quality went into every single painstaking detail. Our VALO curing light is amazing on every front, and that speaks volumes to everyone who went the distance to get it right."
The VALO Corded and VALO Cordless lights went on to win numerous industry-wide awards year after year, including several Townie Choice and Pride Institute "Best of Class" and Cellerant technology awards. Ultradent later came out with the VALO Colors curing light line—a fun new take on the cordless light.
And so we come full circle to the release of the VALO Grand curing light, which Jessop says "solved clinical needs in a big, big way. The larger lens, which is 12 mm and is unsurpassed when it comes to other curing light offerings in the industry, allows the curing light to cover an entire restoration without leaving weak spots that often happens with smaller lenses. These weak spots often lead to restoration failure. The next largest lens on a curing light is only 9 mm and doesn't offer the low profile head that our lights feature, which enables dentists to reach and cure restorations in the very back of the mouth."
However, even though they've come far, Jessop says that the company and his research and development team aren't resting on their laurels. "We didn't get here for free. A lot of people worked so hard to get to this point, and I always feel a sense of urgency to stay ahead of the pack. There are a lot of smart people in this industry, so we try to maintain a certain level of vigilance in always looking for ways to improve and offer the best technologies out there," Jessop remarks.
He also credits the company's hallmark innovations, including the development of the VALO curing light family, to Dr. Dan Fischer, Ultradent's founder and CEO. "Dr. Fischer has always been able to see the opportunities out there in the dental industry because he's a clinician himself. He's always been able to say, 'as a dentist, this is what I need or want,' and it's that passion and conviction behind his real-world connection to what we do that has allowed us to hit a lot of homeruns. He also allows us to try and fail and learn and improve upon those failures so that we can ultimately succeed—which fits the story behind the VALO light's development perfectly."
Click here to learn more about the VALO curing lights.
Ultradent is proud to announce its endorsement and support of
Veterans' Smile Day, an initiative that encourages dentists across the country to offer a day of free dental care and support to our nation's military veterans anytime in the month prior to or after Veteran's Day, which is November 11th. The foundation also encourages offices to host Veterans' Smile Day events around Memorial Day and/or the 4thof July if that better fits their office's schedule and agenda.
Ultradent will support the cause this year and in the years to come with digital and public relations support, as well as through dental product donations to dentists across the nation that wish to hold their own Veterans' Smile Day events.
"I have a son who is active military in the U.S. Army. Certainly, that experience has changed the level of understanding for me about the amount of gratitude that our veterans deserve. I have a daughter-in-law who is in the military as well, she is married to my son who is in the Army, so our military family is growing. I'm so proud of them and all they sacrifice for our freedoms and so many of the things that we take for granted," said
Dr. Dan Fischer, Ultradent's founder and CEO. Of the company's endorsement and participation in the Veterans' Smile Day cause, he said, "I think it's so important to remember not only those who paid the ultimate price with their lives, but also those who go on to bear the scars of war for the rest of their lives."
After seeing a great need for better and more thorough benefits and care for returned servicemen and women, Dr. Karin Irani, a practicing dentist in Los Angeles and recipient of Ultradent's
Icon of Dentistry Award for her work with veterans, co-founded Veterans Smile Day in 2012 with Dr. Deryk Pham, a former U.S. Navy dentist.
Dr. Pham says, "While serving my country as a U.S. Navy dentist deployed to Iraq with my Marines, I saw firsthand what was occurring to the physical and mental health of our military members. These wars and overseas battles have severely damaged our returning heroes." He continues, "A common misconception is that veterans qualify for full benefits upon their return from active duty, but the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs hospitals have long waiting times and provide only limited care. Knowing this, I promised that when I finished my military career and transitioned back into private practice, I would help my fellow veterans."
The foundation held their first Veterans' Smile Day event on Veterans Day weekend in 2012, where they were able to provide free dental care to 35 grateful veterans at one dental office.
Today, more than 300 offices participate across the country and Dr. Karin Irani says she hopes to see that number continue to grow.
"Any dentist or dental office can participate. In order to do so, we encourage them to set aside as much time as they can—whether it's a couple of hours, a half day, a full day, or by opening their office on a Saturday to serve local veterans in need. If they reach out to us through our website, we can help provide them with donated supplies if needed, as well as public relations to help spread the word about their event." said Dr. Irani. "Giving just one day of dental care—which most dentists can do by volunteering their time or office for the Veterans' Smile Day event—can truly change the life of a veteran. We need to open our doors and hearts to this very grateful population who deserves our help. They've kept us safe, the least we can do in response is to show our appreciation by doing what we do best."
To find out more about how you can host your own Veterans' Smile Day event anytime from now until the end of November, or in conjunction with Memorial Day or the 4thof July, please visit veteranssmileday.org. For veterans looking for a dentist in their area that provides free dental care for veterans as a participant in Veterans' Smile Day, visit http://veteranssmileday.org/participating-dentists/