Oral Health Products in the Office: To “Sell” or Not to “Sell”?

To Sell or Not to SellIn dentistry, there is a definite division in thought toward distributing oral health products in the office: those who embrace “selling” in office, and those that shudder at the mere thought of recommending products to the patients they see.

Oral health products are big business

According to WorldDental.org, from 2011 alone, billions of dollars were spent on products alone.

People want to know what products to use and how to use them. They also want to feel like their dental team has their best interest at heart, and not just their hands in peoples pocketbook.

Imagine visiting the dental office for your exam, check up and cleaning, and by the end of your appointment, you know what home care products best suit your needs, and how to use them for best results.

The truth about oral health products is that they are confusing!

Does whitening really work?
Does sensitive toothpaste cause plaque build up?
Does tartar control cause sensitivity, and WHEN exactly are you supposed to use mouth rinse and with why?……too many choices and too little time to figure it all out.

Not to mention that the person responsible for the oral health isle in the supermarket has NO idea what “actually” works; the oral health isle is all about who can pay top dollar for the real estate at being near eye level.

What if you had a “personal shopper” help you unravel the mystery of oral health products

do you think life would be easier?

A healthy mouth is all about balance.  A balance between bacteria, home care technique, products and diet.

A good dental professional will clean your teeth and gums and fix the ones that need repair, but a GREAT dental professional will help you understand what products will best help your situation and why.

A GREAT dental professional will go above and beyond the products you can find in the store, not because they want to “sell” you something, but often because the products that you find in the store are made cheaply with ingredients that may actually be making your symptoms worse, or (at best) not helping you solve an issue.

A GREAT dental professional spends time filtering the good products from the bad ones

and they help you identify what items best suit your issue.


Because a GREAT dental professional understands that you, the patient are the only one that can ensure that your mouth is healthy.

A GREAT dental professional helps you understand that the products you use day in and day out can make or break your chances for healthy teeth and gums, and they actually help you understand how to most effectively use the products they recommend……

Imagine asking the person who stocks the shelves what products are low in abrasiveness, but high in effectiveness when it comes to relieving sensitivity that also does not cause build up…..or, imagine asking them if the pH of the “natural” toothpaste you are using is too acidic, which may be causing sensitivity?  (Spoiler alert….one of the most popular “natural” toothpastes is quite acidic and can lead to tooth sensitivity!)

If you do ask them, chances are you are going to get a blank stare off into no-where land.  They are oral health buyers, not educators.

Yes, product selection is a big deal

why not have the person that helps keep your mouth healthy also help you find the right products?

Chances are, there are so many amazing products that you have never even heard of.

And, if your dental professional is a great one, they are helping you understand the complex area called your mouth, and how to balance the right products, the right techniques and the right steps to take to ensure that your teeth and gums last just as long as you do on this planet, without, (of course) giving you too much grief!

“Selling” you oral health products in the office is their way of letting you know they care

Hopefully you can feel the difference between someone who has your best interest at hand vs someone who is trying to make a buck.

A GREAT dental professional goes above and beyond cleaning your teeth and telling you to floss, an GREAT dental professional helps guide you into the products that give you the most return on investment, and have you spending the least amount of time (and money) in the dental chair.

In the end it’s not about the few dollars the office may make by offering you products (trust me, it’s not many), it’s about your dental professional showing up for you, and letting you know that they have a vested interest in your mouth not only when you are in the office, but at home as well.

What are your thoughts on “buying” products in the office?

If you knew why some were better than others, would you enjoy the convenience of getting your products at your dental visit, or would you rather spend extra time and money trying to figure it out on your lonesome?  Leave a comment and let us know!

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