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Why Bedside Manner Matters

Imagine this: You’ve been experiencing a great deal of pain in one of your back molars for several days. You thought you could wait out the pain in hopes that it would go away, but instead it only seems to get worse. You’re already somewhat afraid of going to the dentist, but you can’t take it anymore, so you check Google for a top-rated dentist in your area and call the practice. 


A receptionist answers the phone and immediately places you on hold for five minutes. When she returns, she is unfriendly and acts as if you are bothering her. You’re already afraid to go to the dentist - now your first impression is that you’re unwelcome there. When you arrive for your appointment you are kept waiting nearly 40 minutes before being taken back to the exam room, and then you see the hygienist, who proceeds to scold you about your oral health and roughly jab at the aching tooth. 

When the dentist finally comes in, he seems rushed and condescending, and doesn’t explain much about what’s going on or provide you different options for treatment. The whole appointment feels cold and clinical. In the end, your doctor fixes the tooth properly and you are satisfied with the results - but do you go back?

If you’re like many people, the answer is no. That’s because what the doctor in this scenario is lacking is something we call "bedside manner," and believe it or not, it can often be more important than skill. In fact, according to Market Street Research, finding a doctor with a good bedside manner can save a patient’s life! That’s because patients are more likely to return to a doctor or dentist they feel comfortable with, no matter the issue. Furthermore, studies have shown that patients of doctors who treat their operating room staff well have better survival rates, and medical and pharmacy staff are less likely to report dangerous medical interactions to doctors with a bad bedside manner, putting patients’ lives at risk. 

So, how do you decide which is more important - skill or bedside manner? The good news is at Dr. Simpson’s office, that’s never a choice you’ll have to make. In addition to the numerous hours of continuing dental education Dr. Simpson chooses to complete each year, she and her entire staff truly care about every single patient. 

From the very first time you call the practice to set up an appointment to the moment you are greeted as you walk through the front door to your cleaning, exam and checkout, we strive to treat each patient with kindness, compassion and understanding - and it’s not just a one-time thing we do for new patients, either. Each time you call, visit or contact us online, we want you to feel just as welcome and cared for as you did from the start. That’s because we know when you honor us with your trust, you are more likely to reach out to us without hesitation in times of crisis, when the difference between immediate care and waiting a few days or weeks can sometimes mean irreversible damage to your teeth, gums and jaw.

Whether you’re a long-standing patient or searching for a new dental practice, we welcome the opportunity to treat you like an old friend. To schedule an appointment, please give Dr. Simpson’s office a call at (910) 550-3959.

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