On Providing a Fix vs an Experience: Part 2

July 11, 2018 Will Kelly DMD

When a car breaks down, the way we choose to have it repaired says a lot about how much we value our vehicle. A similar phenomenon occurs with dental care. 

In part 2 of this series about how we see a fix versus a valued service-based relationship, Dr. Kelly dives back into an experience that made him reflect on the dental profession. Keep reading for the rest of his story:

A Car Service Analogy: Obligation, Expense, or Experience

Coincidently, many days I use the analogy of cars to taking care of teeth with my patients. We wear away the surfaces of our teeth similarly to how tires age. We pay for maintenance and parts with an equal financial obligation and expense.

When we have to start over and restore our vehicle (or get a new one), sometimes it costs the same as major treatment we could have done for our teeth. Sometimes the auto investment is inconvenient and urgent. Often, if we choose, it is predictable and pleases us. We find ways to pay for it.

Individuals always seem to find ways to pay for the things they value. We choose our own experiences whether we know it or not. I invite my patients to consider experiencing dental care in my practice similarly to the good experience I have had with reliable and well-maintained cars.

The business card for my practice has three tag words on it: Restorative, Comprehensive, and Esthetic. I’ve been told that the meaning of these descriptors is too obscure for new patients to understand. Why not be like the dentist down the street and just say “Cosmetic” or “Family Dentistry”?

I believe every opportunity I have to help patients experience each of these focused goals for our patient care enriches the dentistry I can provide them. So many in our patient family have learned through these experiences exactly what these words mean.

To be continued …

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Will Kelly DMD

Dr. Will Kelly attended the North Carolina State University School of Design and received a BA in Communications. He went on to spend two additional years in post baccalaureate studies in Medical Sciences at both UNC Chapel Hill and Virginia Commonwealth University. Dr. Kelly graduated from the top ranked UNC School of Dentistry in 2004. His good hands and clinical abilities led to his being chosen as a teaching assistant to underclassmen in operative dentistry. In addition to clinical time in the dental school, Dr. Kelly had valuable experiences working in both the Durham VA Hospital and for the Indian Health Service in Wyoming. As a child, Dr. Kelly had the opportunity to assist his father on several dental mission trips in Haiti. After completing dental school, Dr. Kelly joined his father in private practice and served on the dental staff at Gaston Family Health Services, where he maintained a position on the board of directors. At this time Dr. Kelly also began his studies in advanced dentistry at the prestigious Pankey Institute in Miami, a continuing journey of learning that has shaped his philosophy and knowledge of the complexities of high-level dentistry. Today Dr. Kelly devotes over 100 hours a year studying with colleagues and mentors who are regarded as "Masters of Dentistry".

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