Tips and Ideas to Fill Holes In Dental Hygiene Schedules

Tips and Ideas to Fill Holes In Dental Hygiene Schedules

Hello Dental Friends,

Holes in the dental hygiene schedule, why do we dread this so much? Because, unfilled appointments, canceled or missed appointments all kill profitability.

So what do you do? You probably are desperate for a quick fix to fill the holes in the schedule. Right? Well, I’ll help you out by sharing some ideas to fill the hygiene schedule as a quick fix. However, I must say a quick fix is typically only a temporary fix. If holes in the schedule are becoming the norm around your office you need something more than a quick fix to figure out why this is happening and work to prevent your hygiene schedule from looking like Swiss cheese every week. Please email me at bhaydenconsulting@gmail.com or comment here if this is becoming an issue with your schedule. I can help you prevent these holes from happening.

On to the ideas for a quick (temporary) fix:

Note: If at all possible, try to avoid moving patients appointments around to fill in gaps. It can aggravate the patient. It’s always best to keep their appointment as scheduled.

Also, this isn’t the time to point fingers or start blaming someone for having holes in the schedule. Work together, as a team to fill these holes. Ideally, the hygienist should be involved in making these calls to patients, etc. Patients are more likely to respond when it’s their beloved hygienist calling them. Besides, the hygienist(s) are obviously the one(s) with the extra time. So the ideas I share are directed to the hygiene department with the goal of them becoming productive, happy and profitable.  (Again, you will want to at a later date, work together as a team to determine why this is happening and create solutions to repair the breakdown.)

how to fill holes in dental hygiene schedule

  • Call List – Do you have any patients that would like to come in at an earlier date for their hygiene appointment?  Call them and let them know you have a rare unexpected change in the schedule and can see them sooner.
  • Cancellation/Missed Appt List – Do you have any patients on these lists that can be called? (BTW: If you’re not looking at this report each week, you should be!)
  • Family Members – Check for other family members due for their hygiene appt. Is there someone coming in with hygiene that has family members that are also due in hygiene that may want to take one of those open slots.
  • Doctors Schedule – Check the doctors schedule for any patients that may be due for their hygiene appt and are coming in around the time that needs to be filled in hygiene. Invite them to take care of their hygiene appointment at the same time.
  • Incentives – Offer an Incentive for accepting a last-minute appointment. For example, complimentary fluoride, teeth whitening, small gift or gift card. Use your social media platforms to advertise this awesome today (or tomorrow) only opportunity.
  • Continuing care/past-due List – Get on the phone and with an enthusiastic and positive tone make some calls to your patients that are due or past due in hygiene. (Vary the times you make these calls. You’ll reach more patients this way.)
  • Social Media – Engage with your patients, potential patients and local businesses on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, etc. For ideas see: Social Media Content
  • Spend more time with your patients. If you have open time that couldn’t be filled, take this opportunity to discuss better home care tools, update their information and medical history, do some perio charting, talk about cosmetic services, any recent continuing education courses, place sealants, apply desensitizing agent to any sensitive teeth, take impressions for whitening trays, review incomplete treatment with them, ask them if they’ll kindly leave a review on Google, Facebook or Yelp, mention how dental gift certificates make great gifts, etc.

Just a reminder before making any calls, it would be a good idea to check your patient’s account balance, insurance benefits and review their clinical notes. Also, be sure to document all calls, conversations, and correspondence made to or with the patient.

If the holes in your schedule are a few weeks out you can try these ideas:

  • Special Offers – Focus on a particular service or group of patients to target with special offers or prizes on a day that has a lot of holes. For example, Mouthguards  / Teeth Whitening / Sealants / Desensitizing Agents / Back to School / Kids day / Senior day.
  • Fun Themed days – Superhero, Luau, BBQ, Disney, Sports, etc.

Despite your best efforts to fill the schedule, you may still end up with some holes that just couldn’t be filled. That’s alright, there is plenty to do to remain productive during this time.

During downtime:

  • Get on the phone and make continuing care calls.
  • Pull Incomplete hygiene treatment report and call, send postcards, emails, texts or letters to your patients.
  • Make calls, send emails, postcards, letters, etc.to your patients that are due, past due or almost due in hygiene.
  • Thoroughly clean and stock treatment rooms.
  • Get out and visit with area businesses. Introduce the office, take them a small gift and a “let’s get acquainted” special offer.
  • Discuss some marketing ideas for the office.
  • Continuing Education. Watch a webinar or video, read a manual, etc. Improve your clinical skills, knowledge of new technology and procedures, telephone scripting, office protocols, etc.
  • Take a tour of the office and look for any areas that could use some improvements. See Clean your Dental Office for ideas.

I hope these ideas provide you with a quick fix to fill those holes in your schedule. Let me know how they work for you. If you enjoy the complimentary ideas that I share each month, I would love and truly appreciate for you to please leave a review on GOOGLE or FACEBOOK

If you are not yet receiving my free dental marketing ideas every month to your email inbox, PLEASE take a second and subscribe today. This way, you won’t miss a single idea. Feel free to share my blog with your dental friends. ~ Thank you!

Yours for Greater Success!

~Betty

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Dental Practice Management Tips and Ideas for June

Dental Practice Management Tips and Ideas for June

Hello Friends,

Did you catch my dental marketing ideas for June? If not, here is the link  Dental Marketing Tips and Ideas for June.

Now that you have your marketing plans set for June…

Are you looking to boost team morale? Is your dental schedule looking weak? Are you in need of some blog/email topic ideas? I’m here to help!

Dental Practice Management Ideas and Reminders for June

Hygiene Continuing Care/Recare Reminders:

Postcard & Social Media Site Scripting Idea: Summertime is a great time of year and it can also be a busy time of year. We encourage you to remember to take the time to squeeze in your regular dental visit before the summer months fly by. Regular dental visits are so important to your overall health.

More ideas on how to fill the hygiene schedule are found here: Ideas to Fill Holes in the Dental Hygiene Schedule

Incomplete Treatment Reports:

Many insurance companies renewed their maximum on June 1st. Pull a report of any patients due in hygiene or with incomplete treatment that have a June renewal date. Make calls and send letter/text/email that their maximum renewed and encourage them to schedule an appointment.

Blog Topic Ideas:

National Smile Month

National Candy Month

National Dairy Month

National Headache Awareness Week: 3-9th

Men’s Health Week: 11-17th

Say Something Nice Day: 1st – This one is easy, look for opportunities to say something nice to your team. What did we do “right” yesterday? How did we go the extra mile for a patient? Did you notice any team member that did something nice for a patient or another team member?

National Thank God It’s Monday Day: 4th  (First Monday)

If you and your team struggle to “like” Mondays, this might help: How to Love Monday

Recess At Work Day: 21st   

Get outside for a few minutes with your team for some fresh air. If you can’t all get outside, open the windows and turn up the radio.  How about a sweet treat to enjoy during “recess”? (ex: ice cream, frozen drink, etc.)

Here are some more team building ideas: Tips to Improve your Dental Office Part 4 ~ Happy Team

Hope you enjoy these ideas and are able to use some of them to help make the month of June a fantastic one for you, your team and your patients. Please let me know how you plan to use the ideas and what the outcome is. I love to hear about your success stories!

Are you receiving my free dental marketing and practice management ideas every month to your email? If not, PLEASE take a second and follow today or send me (bhaydenconsulting@gmail.com) your email address and I will send you an invitation to follow. This way, you won’t miss a single idea. Feel free to share my blog with your dental friends.

~ Thank you!

Yours for Greater Success!

~Betty

P.S. Please stop by and say hello to me on  FacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedIn and Pinterest

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Dental Marketing Ideas for Teachers, Nurses, and Police Officers Appreciation Week

Dental Marketing Ideas for Teachers, Nurses, and Police Officers Appreciation Week

Hello Friends,

The month of May brings many wonderful opportunities to reach out to more people in the community. Here is why:

Teacher Appreciation Week: May 6-12

National Nurses Week: May 6-12 

National Hospital Week: May 6-12

National Police Week:  May 13-19 

Dental Marketing Tips and Ideas for May from Betty Hayden Consulting

This is a great opportunity for dental offices to reach out to the teachers, nurses, and police officers in their community.

How can you reach out to them? Here are a few ideas for you:

First, let’s start with any of your patients that are teachers, nurses, or police officers.

Pull a report with any patients that are school teachers and send “We Appreciate You” cards to them. Unexpected and very much welcomed.

Put together some little thank you gifts to give your patients that are teachers/nurses/police officers when they come in for their dental appointment during the month of May.

See my Pinterest Board for a ton of ideas: Appreciation Gift Ideas

Second, reach out to the teachers, nurses, and officers in the community that are not “yet” patients at your office.

Host a Favorite Teacher/Nurse/Police Officer Contest. Invite the community to nominate their favorites. The winner receives FREE teeth whitening and a certificate stating they won for the favorite teacher/nurse/officer contest.

You could easily ask for donations from local businesses to add to the winning prize.

Within the medical community, a few special weeks are coming up: National Nurses Week – May 6th -12th/ National Hospital Week: May 6-12 / National Nursing Home Week: 13-20 Use this opportunity to reach out to the nurses at local doctors offices, clinics, hospitals, and nursing homes, etc. using the appreciation ideas as listed above.

 Social Media Post Ideas to Improve Engagement:

At the very least you can use your social media platforms to show your love and appreciation for these special and hard-working folks in the community.

PTA Teacher Appreciation Week:7-11

National Nursing Home Week: 13-20 (Starts Mother’s Day to Saturday)
National Police Week:  13-19 

School Principals’ Day: 1

No Homework Day: 6

Nurses Day or National RN Recognition Day: 6

Student Nurse Day: 8  

National Teacher Day: 8 (

Receptionists Day: 9  (Second Wednesday)
School Nurse Day: 9

International Nurses Day: 12 

There are so many ways to celebrate teacher appreciation, police officers, and nurses week in your dental office. If you’re looking for more marketing and practice management ideas for the month of May, please visit here: Dental Tips and Ideas for May

Wishing you all a very happy and productive Spring!

Have you signed up to receive my complimentary dental marketing and practice management ideas that are sent right to your email inbox each month? If not, take a second and sign up. This way, you won’t miss a single idea! Or, if you have an area(s) in the practice that you’re struggling with, feel free to comment here or email me at bhaydenconsulting@gmail.com

Yours for Greater Success,

~Betty

P.S. Please stop by and say hello to me on  FacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedIn and Pinterest

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