More Than Words: The Importance of Dentist-Patient Communication

Past the pleasantries of “Hello Dr. Vasilakos”, the dentist-patient relationship might seem unnecessary—not to mention difficult to carry out when most of our time together is spent with your mouth otherwise preoccupied. However, I can’t stress enough the importance of having open and clear communication with your dentist—be it for something as simple as a hygiene appointment, or as complex as implants or a full mouth reconstruction.

At Planet Dentistry in Toronto’s Forest Hill, we take the time to explain the work leading up to the procedure, from the diagnosis through to an explanation of steps required for a particular treatment, to ensure that the patient is fully informed about the risks and benefits involved, so they can be confident in their decision to carry through with it.

Why is patient-dentist communication so important? Why can’t your dentist just start tinkering away at your teeth? Quite simply, it’s in your best interest.

I once had a patient whose main concern was the unevenness of her two front teeth. The procedure to fix these would have been no trouble, but what I discovered upon full examination was that she had no posterior teeth—meaning that instead of chewing on molars, as it should be, her front teeth were taking the full stress of chewing. Before turning our attention to aesthetics, we first needed to look after the posterior teeth. The full impact of her chewing on the incisors was not visible at a glance, and as words can only go so far, I used x-rays and digital pictures and study model to create an exact replica of her mouth. With this, I was able to show her exactly what the issue was, explaining what was happening and why, ensuring she was well informed before agreeing to the procedure.

In 99 to 100 percent of our cases at Planet Dentistry, the dental work itself takes less time than these preliminary steps. We like to take this time in order to deliver a quality of work we can be proud of, and that you can be proud to show off.

Your satisfaction with the aesthetic result is of course important, but equally as valuable is the knowledge that this result will last. I have full confidence in our Planet Dentistry staff, and I want you to feel the same. Every member has been thoroughly trained, is well versed in the procedures offered at the office, and is happy to address any concerns our patients might have. After all, communication is a two-way street.

good communication Dr. Jerry Vasilakos