What Can Your Dental Practice Do to Still Help Your Patients During Lockdown?
Even during the lockdown, you can support your patients online by giving advice and taking video calls. If the lockdown continues and you can no longer see patients face-to-face, you will have to resort to webcam consultations.
Video consultations are a convenient and simple way to communicate – especially for those in dental pain. Having an option to connect with your patients in this virtually face-to-face way will help you to assess their condition and needs better than a simple phone call. This will also give you the ability to identify a real emergency.
We know that you also have limitations to emergency services, but having a friendly and caring dentist on a video call can provide relief when someone is not feeling well. You can talk about different ways of dealing with the symptoms until it is safe for them to come to your office.
First, patients are advised to call their local dentist. If symptoms get serious, dentists can prescribe medication, such as painkillers and antibiotics, over the phone. In these cases, dentists can call local pharmacies, which can then prepare the necessary medication for patients.
Dental offices that are not closed during the COVID-19 lockdown are still keeping phone contact. The emphasis is on setting up a call first and delaying necessary treatment with simple dressings or antibiotics. However, people can also help themselves by making sure they keep up good dental hygiene during the quarantine, such as brushing regularly.
Although the focus is on delaying treatment, that doesn’t mean people should put off calling if they are experiencing pain or any major issues. Also, keep in mind that what can be considered a dental emergency can be quite different from person to person.
Aside from video chats and phone calls, this is a good time to indirectly help your patients by posting useful content and advice on your blog and social media.
- Show you care – send out a post from the founders of your organization, expressing solidarity with your patients. Show leadership skills by letting them know that you care and that you are accepting phone and video calls.
- Provide relevant information – your patients may be in the middle of many treatment plans. Provide specific guidance to every group about how they can manage their journey. People who are undergoing a specific treatment may want to know what they should do right now if they are near the end of the treatment. Don’t just send one email. Re-send messages to patients at least every two weeks, and personalize them if possible
- Set goals – encourage your patients to set personal dental health goals, then ask your followers to share their results. Being encouraging and setting measurable goals makes it more likely that people will share their results. Be sure that they will remember this experience and how you were there for them in their time of need.