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After Dental School

Getting to know you

The ADA is made up of dentists. Here’s one of them.

Dr. Rao

Dr. Rao ice fishing in Minnesota.

Dr. Aruna Rao, pediatric dentist from Saint Cloud, Minn.

Why dentistry?

My pedo/orthodontist, Dr. Katherine Kula, had a profoundly positive impact on my outlook of the dental profession, so I researched more to gain a better understanding of what it entailed before determining that it was the right career path for me.

Why are you a member?

Knowing that I’m a part of something bigger than myself gives me a sense of pride and comfort. Additionally, membership has taught me so much about myself and the profession, so continuing that commitment is a lifelong obligation I have for myself to give back to something that has given so much to me.

What has been the best time of your career so far?

Spending two years on the ADPAC Board as a student representative was such a memorable time meeting national leaders while receiving advocacy and government affairs training. The sheer number of dentists and specialists dedicated to advancing and protecting the profession is inspiring.

When I’m not practicing, I’m likely thinking about my next meal!

One fun fact about me:

I’ve had driver’s licenses in Nebraska, Texas, New York and Minnesota.

ISDS hosts annual new dentist education, networking event

The Illinois State Dental Society hosted its annual “The Event: Envision, Entice, Engage” on March 12 in Springfield, Illinois. The Event is designed to bring together new dentist leaders from across Illinois for education and networking.

New dentists also could meet with the ISDS Board of Trustees, which meets in conjunction with the Event.

Here are some photos from the event.

ISDS

Drs. Lauren Hood-Olson, Lindsey Yates (national NDC rep), Samantha Arnold, Kate Buskirk, Kylea Tibbs-Hnizdo take a group selfie during ISDS’ annual “The Event: Envision, Entice, Engage” event held March 23.

Drs. Lauren Hood-Olson, Lindsey Yates (national NDC rep), Samantha Arnold, Kate Buskirk, Kylea Tibbs-Hnizdo take a group selfie during ISDS’ annual “The Event: Envision, Entice, Engage” event held March 23.

Drs. Rebecca Testa, Mark Ryan, Kristin Tussing

Drs. Rebecca Testa, Mark Ryan, Kristin Tussing

(From left) Jessica Moon, her husband Dr. Brenden Moon (Illinois NDC chair), Dr. Hillarie Hudson and Dr. Sharon Molitoris.

(From left) Jessica Moon, her husband Dr. Brenden Moon (Illinois NDC chair), Dr. Hillarie Hudson and Dr. Sharon Molitoris.

I’m a new associate dentist…what does the ADA do for me?

From supplying life insurance, advice on which board to take, and resources to make your CV shine; the ADA has many benefits to offer. In this blog post, I’ll be focusing on what the ADA can do for the recent graduate as well as a dentist entering an associate or partnership position. This was myself a few years ago. Unfortunately I was unaware of these items below that the ADA offered; however, I would have utilized almost all of them. Hopefully the resources that I go over in this issue will be useful to you — the new dentist!

Dr. Sinclair

Dr. Sinclair

Classifieds

Finding a job after graduation was much harder than I originally anticipated. During dental school I consistently heard about the rapid retiring rate of general dentists and the lack of new dentists entering the job scene creating a huge demand.

Well if you add in a recession and a few more dental schools opening up in the US, let’s just say jobs weren’t as plentiful as I initially believed.  Besides even if there were jobs out there, where was I supposed to look?  I had never seen a job posting for a dentist on the pages of monster.com or Craigslist.

Did you know that many state dental associations have their own classified section for dental jobs? While writing this article, I paused to take a moment to check out the listings. With the help of the Virginia Dental Association, I was able to view over 25 postings for general dentist jobs in almost every part of the state. This consolidated area of postings is a great way to see what positions are available as well as a fantastic resource for posting that CV you worked so hard on. Visit the VDA classifieds here. The ADA classifieds can be found here.

Contract resources

Congratulations! You’ve been offered a job, or maybe two or three. Well how do you know this contract agreement you are getting ready to sign is fair? Do you have a 5, 10, 20 mile non-compete, and do you know what that entails?

Just imagine if there was a non-compete clause in your contract that made and job locations in a 20-mile radius around your current employment location off limits. If this was the case, you could find yourself having a 30-45 minute commute for any future employment opportunities. How will you be paid on production, collections or salary? Are you going to be an employee or an independent contractor?  Are you or your employer responsible for paying lab fees? These are just some of the questions I had to answer looking over my initial contracts, and I was unfamiliar with almost all of these terms. Each one of these choices listed above has its own pros and cons, and that is where the ADA comes in.

The ADA has a free resource for members, “Dentist Employment Agreements: A Guide to Key Legal Provisions.” This document explains many of the terms and provisions common to dental employment agreements. The material is presented in a manner to help you consider and review a contract employment. You can also contact the ADA legal department for help understanding the language in your contract. However, remember this is not a substitute for legal advice or a lawyer’s review of your contract. That scenario above about a 20-mile non-compete creating a long commute happened to a fellow dentist.  I think that makes this one service by itself worth every penny of your ADA membership — at least from all the gas money you would save.

Ethics Hotline

Chances are after you have signed your employment contract you will end up working with at least one other dentist.  Many of these dentists have gone through very similar, if not the exact, training that you went through. What happens though if you start seeing shared patients, and you disagree with the recommended treatment plan? The first step would be to discuss the plan with the other dentist(s), but afterwards if you still feel as is if it excessive or unnecessary treatment where do you turn? The ADA created their Ethics Hotline (1.800.621.8099) for instances like this. The ethics hotline is place to discuss questionable issues that may arise in the day to day happening of a dental office in an anonymous environment. Personally I have never needed this, but I find it very comforting that the ADA offers this resource to its members.

Reduced Dues

One of the most common talked about items as a new dentist is the amount of debt that has been incurred. I, like many of you, had to take out student loans to cover the cost of my education as well as my living expenses. I read just the other day where the average dental student debt upon graduating is around $240,000. The ADA and its components understand this as well.  As a new dentist, the memberships rates are drastically reduced the first 5 years of practice and are even free the first year of practice. For more information, click here.

Being an associate can be very challenging and rewarding at the same time.  It will give you the opportunity to develop your speed and skills as a dentist while in many cases working with a mentor. Associateship will introduce you to the fellowship of dentistry that the ADA embodies.  I had the privilege of working alongside several great dentists in varying office environments during my associateships and call many of those dentists’ great friends today.

This blog post, reprinted with permission, originally appeared in the Virginia Dental Association journal. Dr. Cappy Sinclair is a New Dentist Now guest blogger and a 2009 graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University. Dr. Sinclair currently serves on the Board of Trustees at the Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, as member of 3M’s Council for Innovative Dentistry, and as an ambassador for the Dawson Academy. He started his own practice Coastal Cosmetic Dentistry 3 years ago from the ground up and is more than happy to share his success and failures with fellow new dentists. He is a member of the American Dental Association and the Virginia Dental Association. To contact Dr. Sinclair, email him csinclair@smilevabeach.com.

Register for 2015 ADEA Dental Student Virtual Fair

Dental students interested in learning about what comes after graduation, and how to juggle residency applications, writing a resume, leadership and different types of dental careers, should register for the 2015 ADEA Student Virtual Fair.

The free, live, online event will be held 4-10 p.m. EST on April 2. To register, click here.

The 2015 ADEA Dental Student Virtual Fair is designed to give dental students free access to information and connect them with professionals from ADEA, dental specialties and dental companies who can answer their questions in real time.

In addition, two ADA New Dentist Committee representatives — Drs. Kendra Zappia and Jon Pascarella — will be participating in a panel presentation from 7-7:30 p.m. The ADA will also have a booth for attendees to visit.

All dental students are welcome to attend the event. Recent graduates interested in learning about different career options are also welcome to attend.

Students will be able to:

  • Log in to the event from any Internet connected device.
  • Speak directly with dental specialty program directors and association professionals, military recruiters and corporate sponsor exhibitors in live text chat rooms.
  • View presentations about financial aid, interviewing for residencies, ADEA PASS and much more.
  • Download and save resources from dental professionals to access after the live event.
  • Learn about the ADEA PASS application process.
  • Listen to a keynote presentation from the ADEA Chair of the Board, Dr. Lily Garcia.

For more information, including the exhibitor list and presentation lineup, click here.

Learn how to help law enforcement through dental coding workshop

Registration is open for FBI-sponsored National Crime Information Center Dental Coding workshop in Sacramento, California, March 28-29.

The FBI’s Criminal Justice Information Services Division organizes these weekend workshops across the country. The training sessions are designed to provide NCIC dental coding and National Dental Image Repository instruction to forensic odontologists and licensed dentists who wish to provide assistance to law enforcement in identifying missing and unidentified persons cases.

The workshop is set for 8 a.m.-6 p.m. at the Embassy Suites Sacramento Riverfront Promenade. Participants will receive a certification for 16 hours of training at the end of the course, but they should also check the continuing education unit requirements for their organization or association to determine whether the credit is accepted.

The FBI will conduct a criminal history background check on everyone who registers, and a felony conviction will disqualify a person from participating. The FBI also asks that those who have attended a workshop before not register to allow others to participate.

The training is free, but attendees must pay for their own travel and lodging. Those who choose to stay at the Embassy Suites should reference “dental coding workshop” when booking their reservation.

There are 50 slots available, and registrations will be accepted first-come, first-served. Registrants must be licensed dentists. For a registration form, email Kathleen Oldaker at kathleen.oldaker@leo.gov.

RWJF seeks research award applications

Are you interested becoming a dental faculty member and from a historically disadvantaged background?

signing a documentThe Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is seeking applications, due March 18, for the 2015 Harold Amos Medical Faculty Development Program.

RWJF created the program, named after the first African-American to chair a department at Harvard University’s medical school, to help increase the number of underrepresented minorities on medical faculties.

The program offers four-year postdoctoral research awards to increase the number of faculty from historically disadvantaged backgrounds who can achieve senior rank in academic medicine and dentistry, and who will encourage and foster the development of succeeding classes of such dentists and physicians.

The program will fund up to 10 four-year awards. Scholars will received an annual stipend of up to $75,000 each, complemented by a $30,000 annual grant to support research activities.

For more information, including key dates and eligibility and selection criteria, click here.

ADA offers resources for new dentists, dental students

Recognizing that dental students and new dentists have different needs, the ADA offers a plethora of services, resources and benefits to help them succeed in their professional and personal lives.

“As dentist, we are professionals, and the ADA is our professional organization,” said Dr. Chris Hasty, vice-chair of the ADA New Dentist Committee. “I see the ADA as the lighthouse of dentistry, guiding our profession to a safe and ethical future, and steering us away from the dangers of outside entities.  As new dentists, we have our whole career ahead of us, and the ADA is here to help and see us prosper.”

Dental students and new dentists receive benefits all other members get, including travel benefits, health and wellness information, continuing education programs and access to care initiatives. However, certain ADA products and services are tailored to their needs.

Financial planning

CalculatorAdjusted for inflation, the average dental school debt for the class of 2000 was $118,515. For the class of 2013, it was $215,145, according to the annual ADEA Survey of Dental School Seniors. Now add in the cost of starting a practice, and it can get overwhelming.

The ADA provides dental students and new dentists with resources to help them stay on track for a bright financial future.

Provided by Wells Fargo Practice Finance, and developed with dentists in mind, the Center for Professional Success provides business planning calculators, including a debt load calculator, which can help new dentists and dental students determine how much they can responsibly afford to borrow for personal and business use. Other calculators available are the loan payment calculator, which estimates monthly loan payment. The loan term calculator helps dentists see how much faster they can pay off an existing loan by adding an additional fixed amount to their monthly payments.

For students seeking financial assistance, the ADA Foundation has a scholarship program for those pursuing careers in dentistry, dental hygiene, dental assisting and dental laboratory technology. The number of ADA Foundation scholarships awarded is dependent upon available annual funds. To learn more about the ADA Foundation scholarships, visit adafoundation.org/en/how-to-apply/education. The ADA also provides information on various federally funded scholarships.

In addition, the ADA provides information on dental student loan repayment programs and resources, including federal and state programs, that offer student loan repayment assistance, often in exchange for services in a health care shortage area. To learn more, visit ADA.org/student or request more information from studentaffairs@ada.org.

Understanding licensure

Understanding LicensureDental licensure marks the transition between dental school and dental practice. The ADA provides a free guide called Understanding Licensure, a resource to help guide dental students through the licensure experience.

The guide takes new dentists through the application process, preparing for the clinical exam, notification and appeals, licensure by credentials, etc.

To view the Understanding Licensure guide, click here.

Finding a job

The ADA CareerCenter is the official online job board of the ADA, a resource for searching dental career opportunities or recruiting dental professionals.

The resource allows professionals to search or post job opportunities for dentists, oral surgeons, orthodontists and other qualified professionals who specialize in dentistry. Visit the ADA CareerCenter.

Staying up-to-date

The ADA can also help new dentists and dental students stay current on the latest dentistry news as well as scientific findings and studies.

The Journal of the American Dental Association and the ADA News are free to members. These publications are available on ADA.org/publications, along with the ADA Dental Product Guide, the ADA Catalog and ADA E-Communications, which include the ADA Morning Huddle, a daily bulletin of the latest news complied exclusively for ADA members.

New Dentist NewsIn addition, new dentists and dental students receive the ADA New Dentist News, a quarterly publication distributed as an insert in the ADA News as a member resource. To read the latest ADA New Dentist News, click here.

In 2013, the ADA New Dentist Committee launched New Dentist Now, a blog where new dentists can keep up with their colleagues, stay fresh on issues in dentistry and find out about events.

For scientific findings and studies, new dentist and dental student members can access full-text articles online with instant access to over 280 journals through the ADA Library & Archives website. About 95 percent are strictly dental journals. The other 5 percent have medical-dental crossover. This includes in-house access to the New England Journal of Medicine articles going all the way back to 1812. To access the ADA Library & Archives online, click here.

Leadership and Advocacy

Comprising 17 members representing each of the ADA’s regional districts, the New Dentist Committee is a national committee of the ADA Board of Trustees. Its mission: To serve as the voice of the new dentist within the ADA. The committee advises the Board on member benefits and the member experience from a new dentist perspective, as well as, on policy affecting new dentists, among other things. Committee members also provide insight on the issues and needs of new dentists through their liaison roles on the other 11 ADA agencies.

The New Dentist Network engages new dentists, develops leaders and contributes to and influences resources that add member value. It has over 800 contacts and is comprised of new dentist committees and volunteers, ASDA leaders and society staff at all levels of the ADA.

In addition, the New Dentist Committee oversees and actively participates in the Success Dental Student Programs conducted in dental schools around the country. The Success Dental Student Programs provide the next generation of dentists with ethical and practice management information and valuable ADA resources for the transition from dental school to dental practice.

“As a new dentist it is important to be a member of the ADA because we are the future of Dentistry,” said Dr. Michael LeBlanc, New Dentist Committee chair. “In order to help set policy we must have a voice. No better place than the ADA to help set policy and the success of dentistry now and in the future.”

To get involved or for more information, call your state or local dental society, or contact the ADA New Dentist Committee office at newdentist@ada.org or 1-312-440-2386.

With student debt, more young adults live with their parents

After graduating from dental school, did you move back in with your parents?

dental student infographicAccording to a Wall Street Journal article, more young adults are living at home with their parents because of high student debt, along with joblessness and rising housing costs.

A $10,000 increase in student debt per graduate in a U.S. state is associated with an additional 2.9 percentage point rise in the rate of 25-year-olds living with parents, the article says, based on an analysis by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

Adjusted for inflation, the average dental school debt for the class of 2000 was $118,515. For the class of 2014, the average debt was $247,227, according to the American Dental Education Association.

The WSJ article said the New York Fed study is the latest to show that young Americans are now much more likely to delay leaving home, or to “boomerang” back, as young people weighed down by student debt may try to save money by staying home.

To read the full WSJ article, click here.

ADA Institute for Diversity in Leadership seeks applicants for 2015-16 class

Class of 2014-15: The 16 members of the Institute for Diversity in Leadership 2014-15 class attended their first session Sept. 4-5 at ADA Headquarters. From left to right (front row) Drs. Robin Nguyen, Trinity, Fla.; Carliza Marcos, San Carlos, Calif.; Xochitl Anderton, Lubbock, Texas; Amanda Hemmer, Phoenixville, Pa.; Christina Meiners, San Antonio; and Zellisha Quam, Albuquerque, N.M.; (center row) Drs. Rico Short, Smyrna, Ga.; Mark Limosani, Weston, Fla.; Malieka Johnson, San Diego; and Abe Abdulwaheed, Cambridge, Mass.; (back row) Drs. Inna Piskorska, San Antonio; Kevin Bolden, Waco, Texas; Deryck Pham, Mays Landing, N.J.; Darwin Hayes, Bronx, N.Y.; Paul Hsiao, Fresno, Calif.; and Shane Murphy, Anchorage, Alaska.

Class of 2014-15: The 16 members of the Institute for Diversity in Leadership 2014-15 class attended their first session Sept. 4-5 at ADA Headquarters. From left to right (front row) Drs. Robin Nguyen, Trinity, Fla.; Carliza Marcos, San Carlos, Calif.; Xochitl Anderton, Lubbock, Texas; Amanda Hemmer, Phoenixville, Pa.; Christina Meiners, San Antonio; and Zellisha Quam, Albuquerque, N.M.; (center row) Drs. Rico Short, Smyrna, Ga.; Mark Limosani, Weston, Fla.; Malieka Johnson, San Diego; and Abe Abdulwaheed, Cambridge, Mass.; (back row) Drs. Inna Piskorska, San Antonio; Kevin Bolden, Waco, Texas; Deryck Pham, Mays Landing, N.J.; Darwin Hayes, Bronx, N.Y.; Paul Hsiao, Fresno, Calif.; and Shane Murphy, Anchorage, Alaska.

The American Dental Association Institute for Diversity in Leadership is accepting applications through April 30 for its 2015-16 class.

Dr. Amanda Hemmer, 2014-15 class member of the Institute for Diversity in Leadership

Dr. Amanda Hemmer

The Institute is designed to provide education and leadership skills to dentists who are members of racial, ethnic and/or gender groups that have been traditionally underrepresented in leadership roles within the profession and their communities.

Sixteen applicants will be selected for the program which includes attendance at three leadership training sessions conducted by faculty from Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management at ADA Headquarters in Chicago on Sept. 10-11, Dec. 7-8, and Sept. 8-9, 2016. Participants will be reimbursed for their hotel and travel expenses.

(From left) Drs. MarkLimosani, DeryckPham and Abe Abdulwaheed

(From left) Drs. MarkLimosani, DeryckPham and Abe Abdulwaheed

The Institute for Diversity in Leadership is made possible by generous support from Henry Schein Dental and Procter & Gamble.

To learn more about the Institute and how to apply, visit ADA.org/diversityinstitute or contact Leadership Team Services at IDL@ada.org or call the ADA toll-free number at ext. 2600.

When interacting with challenging patients, behavior awareness can help

As my patient pool grows, the dentistry doesn’t change much, but the person in my chair changes every day. I connect with most patients pretty well, but every now and then I am presented with a challenge. What I would call a difficult patient has nothing to do with the dentistry required in their mouth. The difficulty comes from the patient interaction. I know myself, I know the dentistry, but there is something missing in my understanding of the patient.

Dr. Carolyn Norton

Dr. Carolyn Norton

I received some insight from one of my attendings at my GPR program, who is also an L.D. Pankey Institute faculty member. He introduced me to the Social Styles Model, which is taught at the Pankey Institute along with the concept of relationship based dentistry. Our discussion led me to the TRAMCOM Group website. Here they elaborate on the specifics of the Social Styles Model.

In the 1960s Roger Reid and John Merrill created the Social Styles Model to help predict human interactions in business relationships. They identified three variables that determine a person’s social style: assertiveness, responsiveness, and versatility. Within these behavioral dimensions four social styles emerged: analytical, amiable, driving, and expressive.

Responsiveness is determined by how much you control or reveal your emotions. Assertiveness is based on where you fall in the spectrum of ask versus tell, or lead versus follow.

No one social style is better than the others, and each style has its own pros and cons. Once you get familiar with each social style, you will begin to pick up on clues that tell you which style your patient uses. Here are four unique behavioral patterns recognized in the Social Style Model, according to The TRACOM Group:

ADA New Dentist guest blogDriving style patients control their emotions and speak assertively. These people want to know the facts about their treatment. Be direct and practical regarding their problems and treatment options. They are focused on the end result and want to know you have a plan.

Amiable style patients show their emotions and prefer to ask questions than give orders. These patients are friendly and ask questions because it makes them feel more comfortable. Take the time to talk with them and get personal. It will definitely pay off.

Analytical style patients control their emotions and prefer to ask questions than give orders. They ask questions because they want to know all of the details. They want to understand each step, the cost, and maybe even the number of appointments. They appreciate precision and accuracy. Take time to develop their treatment plan to show that you care about these things too.

Expressive patients show their emotions and speak assertively. These patients will share their thoughts and feelings regarding their dental problems, but may need your direction. Let them speak, you listen, and then help them focus on their needs.

The next time you have a challenging or difficult patient, look at this social style chart and see where they belong. If you understand why a patient is behaving a certain way, then this may help you alter your social style to make the interaction successful and prevent frustration. This is where versatility comes in. Versatility is primarily the responsibility of the dentist in the patient-doctor relationship. A versatile dentist can alter their social style to make the patient more comfortable. This requires a certain level of awareness and compassion for the patients social needs, not just their dental needs.

I can easily recall patients that fit each social style. Seeing them through this lens makes me like them better as people, and I will definitely change how I interact with them at our next appointment.

 

Dr. Carolyn Norton is a New Dentist Now guest blogger and a 2014 graduate of the University of Florida College of Dentistry. She is in a 12-month general practice residency at the North Shore University Hospital in Evanston, Ill., affiliated with the University of Chicago. Dr. Norton was a contributing editor for the American Student Dental Association from 2012-14.