I work as a clerical assistant in a pediatric dental office, and I am commonly surprised by the number of children who are scared of the dentist. Many kids think that cleanings will be painful, and they believe they will be scolded for eating sugary foods. Children are also extremely frightful of the noises made by the water spraying tools and the suction devices. As adults, we know that dental cleanings are easy and free of pain. We need to impart this knowledge to our children so they know not to fear the dentist. I have provided blogs that will help you speak with your child about dental care. Good communication, trips to your own dentist, and online videos can assist you. So will good brushing techniques that will make your child proud to see the dentist. Enjoy my articles so you can help your child build oral care confidence.
If you are a new member of your dental office's auxiliary staff — such as an assistant, receptionist, hygienists, etc. — you may be surprised to learn that you have a lot of say when it comes to the office's medical supplies. While your dentist may have their preferred products, one of your duties may be purchasing and restocking inventory. Here are four ways to save costs for your office while still getting high-quality medical supplies.
Buy in Bulk
If you are only buying one or two products at a time, you may be paying more for these individual products than you would if you bought in bulk. Instead of cherry-picking the best prices, work with your dentist to figure out which brands they like. Keep a detailed inventory of how often things are used and when supplies typically run out so that you can consolidate your purchases. Once you find a distributor that you like, they will want to keep you on as a loyal customer. It's in that distributor's best interest to offer you good prices for bulk orders.
Visit Dental Conferences to Get Samples
You may need to visit dental conferences for continuing education hours or to promote your practice's interests. These types of events are a great way to get product samples for a fee or even for free. You and the dentist can try and evaluate a host of different products in the office without having to commit to a distributor if you haven't found the one you like.
Consider Which Products Can Be Sterilized and How They Can Be Sterilized
While some supplies, like cotton rolls and dry angles, need to be thrown out since bio-burden cannot be removed, there are a lot of medical products that could potentially be used over and over. While you may think that all plastic products need to be thrown away, some plastics — like plastic x-ray holders — could be reused if they are made or placed in the proper sterilization packages. If you can invest in products that can be sterilized, then you will save costs by avoiding disposable products. Another way to save costs is to carefully match a product with its ideal sterilization method. For instance, if a metal dental instrument is prone to corrosion, then you should avoid steam sterilization.
Look for Hidden Costs When Comparing Supplies
It may be tempting to go for the lowest price, but consider the hidden costs of a product. For example, some brands of alginate may initially cheaper in their price, but there are some drawbacks. Alginate products can warp easily and need stable temperatures and humidity levels as they are transported to dental laboratories. In a worst-case scenario, an impression could be warped enough that your dentist may need to recall a patient to take a new impression. Redoing a procedure takes up your dentist's time from other clients and means that more products, like alginate, will be wasted. To prevent this type of issue, work with your dentist to find high-quality products that work the first time around. For example, you may want to invest in alginate substitutes, like low-cost polyvinyl siloxanes, for impressions since they have better stability and tear strength.
These are just a few ways you can save money on your office's dental supplies. Reach out to a medical supplies distributor for more details.