In this second piece on patient communication I wanted to discuss how we help a patient with tooth wear. Over the years this is one of the most common communication challenges I hear from other dentists. We joke about the dialogue where we tell a patient they grind and they respond "No I Don't". Although we laugh about it, this reflects a challenge of helping patients with ownership around parafucntion specifically, and more broadly about other topics. My experience is that "telling" is far less effective then helping the patient discover what is going on for themselves. Sometimes the discovery process takes longer, but it is always more impactful and has a more profound effect on behavior.
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