This week I received a beautiful flower arrangement from a patient. It really marks over twenty five years that I have been taking care of her teeth. Our professional relationship goes back to the days when I was still a dental student in the early 90's. My patient is committed to the upkeep of her dental health, and I try hard to deliver my best dental care to her.
Indeed, dental care requires a commitment from both the patient and the dentist. It really does not matter how well we perform the dentistry at the office. If the patient is not committed to home care, then dental problems will continue to worsen. Home care is not just about flossing and brushing. For example: in cases where the patient's bite and joints are considered at risk, staying committed to wearing the night guards will help minimize problems of excess wear and fractures of teeth and restorations in the mouth.
When the patient and the dentist develop a mutual understanding of the patient's dental condition and what it takes to maintain optimum dental health, the result can be long lasting, manageable, and predictable.