What’s The Role For Dentists In Managing Sleep Problems?

managing sleep problemsIf you have trouble sleeping, you may not know that your dentist can help.  Dentists actually play a big role in managing sleep problems. This is because there are a number of elements that link your mouth and teeth to your sleep.

One commonly occurring problem is Bruxism. This is the grinding of the teeth or clenching the jaw.  This sometimes occurs with people while they sleep and they don’t even know it.  It can cause pain and damage to the teeth and even change the shape of the jaws and alignment of teeth.

Dentists can also predict the risk of sleep apnea and snoring. This is why your dentist may ask you if you snore.

Dental appliances are an effective way for treating all of these issues. There are certain devices that hold the mandible forward during sleep so the airway stays open.  These devices reduce snoring and help with sleep apnea.

If you think you have bruxism or sleep apnea you should talk to your dentist. Dentists working in the area of dental sleep medicine usually have a good working relationship with local sleep physicians. Check out the article from the Huffington Post here to see videos about these issues as well.

Can Your Dentist Help You Sleep?|Huffington Post

Your Practice May Be Losing Money Because You Don’t Understand Dental Insurance

In an article from Dentistry IQ written by Jennifer Schultz, she explains how many dental practices lose money because of their misunderstandings in dental insurance. Schultz states that during the 20 years she has spent in the dental industry, she has seen practices lose money because of costly mistakes. Here are some of the errors that you might be making:

  • Writing off money when it is not necessary
  • Missing the timely filing deadline for insurance claims
  • Submitting PPO plan fees on the insurance claim form
  • Not charging the full practice fee when procedures are not covered by insurance (when applicable)
  • Not following up on unpaid insurance claims
  • Credentialing errors
  • Not leveraging benefit information in the practice management software
  • Not reading or understanding the PPO contract
  • Not asking for a fee schedule of the PPO plan before signing
  • Not knowing which companies the practice is in network for

This can all be prevented with proper training and education. Schultz collaborated with other leading dental experts to develop Dental Insurance Navigator. It’s a membership website that provides your entire dental team with education and training on all things dental insurance. Learn more about this great resource here: Is Your Dental Practice Losing Money Because You Don’t Understand Insurance?

Dental Practices Use The Cloud

cloudManaging a dental practice has become more complex with more compliance demands, medical records, changing health laws and just the administrative tasks. One thing that has made business a bit easier is the cloud technology.

Cloud technology enables users to retrieve information through web based tools and applications rather than from a direct server connection.  Some practices have found a lot of success with switching to cloud based online employee time and attendance systems.  It has saved them time, and payroll processing has become easier.

Read more about the cloud system and how it may help with your dental practice in an article by Scott Mulka here: Dental practices use the cloud to better manage time and attendance: Can the cloud help you? – DentistryIQ

Establishing A Fee Schedule For Dental Services

fee scheduleAdjusting fees for your dental services is a required part of running a successful dental practice. You may be hesitant to increase fees but you need to look at the bigger picture. Here are some tips to consider when you are establishing your fee schedule.

Know the competition: Be sure that you are aware of competitors fees in your area. You shouldn’t be too far below or above the local marketplace.

Establish a standard fee: Having a standard fee for each service based on your overhead, expenses, patient base, individual profession expertise, and debt will help you be successful.

Build relationships: When patients have a good relationship with their dentist, they don’t question the fees. They know they are getting the best care in town.

Read about some more tips for establishing a fee schedule here: 10 Steps To solid Fees For Your Dental Practice|Dentistry IQ