Introducing Dr. Clay
In practice for 17 years, Dr. Michael Clay has owned and operated Gulf Coast Dental as a sole practitioner for over five years. He specializes in oral surgery, dental implants, and crown and bridgework. Patients like the friendly and well-explained treatment they get from Dr. Clay and his staff and trust his recommendations.
Patients Are Impatient… and Other Challenges with a Physical Impression Process
After 17 years as a dentist, there’s one thing Dr. Clay knows for sure: patients donotlike getting polyvinyl siloxane (PVS) impressions taken. And they don’t like the temporary crown process either. The truth is, patients are… well, just not patient.
We all know the drill. “A patient comes in, we get them numb, prep the teeth, do a PVS impression – that no one likes – then put in temporaries. The temps are in two to three weeks and sometimes longer depending on the lab,” says Dr. Clay. He also notes that sometimes temporaries come off and need to be reapplied, resulting in more chair time for patients and doctors.
When the final crown (or implant, etc.) is ready, it’s time for the fit. And it doesn’t always fit, does it? Dr. Clay says, “Sometimes the final product needs to be adjusted, which can compromise the integrity. And sometimes, the lab needs to start over and remake the crown.” That’s because once the impression is shipped to the lab, the manufacturing process is a black box. There’s no way to collaborate with them to ensure the final tooth or teeth will fit.
A few dentist friends of Dr. Clay were using a scanner in their practice and loved it. So when he saw an ad for Dandy, he was primed to start investigating.
Going Digital with Dandy
What first caught Dr. Clay’s eye about Dandy was the ability to start using a scanner without having to make a significant financial investment. He previously thought of a scanner as a ‘wish list’ item. But, he says, Dandy’s offer made him pull the trigger. “Not having to pay out that high-cost upfront made it a very, very easy decision to make the jump over to using a scanner.”
After an easy 15-minute product onboarding, he scheduled training. And like everything else thus far, Dr. Clay says the training was a breeze.
No Learning Curve, No Surprises
“I’ve been doing PVS impressions for almost 20 years now. And going from that to the scan, you’d think that there would have been a hiccup, or maybe a learning curve,” says Dr. Clay. “There’s absolutely no learning curve to this. We were trained through FaceTime in about a three- or four-hour training period. That was sufficient. In fact, it was probably too much. It’s that easy.”
And the good times kept rolling with the team’s first patient. They started small with a single crown. “When we did our first crown, the scan took all of 5 minutes. I was high-fiving my assistant, and we were ready to do bridgework or do full mouth rehab. I mean, that’s the attitude you have after you do it. Because you realize how easy it is.”
“Working with Dandy in comparison to previous labs, there’s just no comparison,” Dr. Clay enthuses. “I’m texting routinely, back and forth with Dandy to ensure that everything is going as smooth[ly] as possible. There are no surprises. When I get my crown or bridge back at the expected time, I already know that everything’s gonna be fine … There’s just no error happening with the scan.”
I know what they’re going to look like before I get them, and they work every time. No remakes, and I think I’ve had to touch up a crown maybe five times in the last five months. And that’s extraordinary.
Happier Patients and More Chair Time (or Free Time!)
Now that initial appointments are shorter, people aren’t coming in with temps that need to be put back on – or worse, remade – and final crowns and bridges fit perfectly the first go-round. Dr. Clay says he’s able to see more people and better fit in emergencies. Or, maybe even fit in some free time during the day.
It’s a no-brainer. I wish Dandy had been available 10 years ago. It’s a great process, and the patient experience has been wonderful. I can’t imagine ever going back.
He says, “If I had a friend who’s a dentist … ask me if they should use Dandy or not, I would just tell them, yes. If they want happier patients, more time to see patients, or more time for themselves, they should contact Dandy. If they want to be happier, more content, more satisfied with their work, they need to contact Dandy.”