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In a Time of Change Find out Why Things are Going So Well

Leading a group at a dry erase boardSometimes it seems we’re wired to correct the negative. So when it comes to making a change, we’ll wonder, “What is the problem and how shall I fix it?”

Author Dan Heath suggests that this approach probably works fine most of the time — if your kid has a single F on his report card, by all means focus on that problem. However in a post on the Fast Company blog, Heath suggests it isn’t always wise to focus on problems:

There’s one time in life when this problem-focus backfires on us, and that’s when we’re trying to change things. In times of change, our report card doesn’t look almost-perfect. It looks mixed. Parts of it look like a failure. And if, in those times, we slip into problem-solving mode, we’ll spin our wheels, because there are problems everywhere. That’s a recipe for inaction, for paralysis.

What’s the answer? Instead of focusing on the problems, identify the parts that are going right and try to reproduce those results. Heath calls this a bright spots focus.

Here’s an example — let’s say you set a New Year’s resolution to get more exercise, and that looking back you haven’t been as consistent as you hoped. You probably exercised on some days – what made those days different? If you do some detective work to identify those bright spots (“I woke up earlier on those days,” or “I had my gym bag ready-to-go by the front door,”) you can focus on increasing the number of good days, rather than scolding yourself for having bad days.

Have you found any bright spots? Leave your answers in the comments.

The Sunshine Act: FAQs for Dentists

open mouthA new law called the Sunshine Act requires certain companies that provide payments, gifts, food, education, and other “transfers” to dentists to submit an annual report to the federal government with information about each dentist and what was provided.

The Act is intended to make the financial relationships between industry and providers transparent on a national scale, and to give consumers information so they may ask questions and make more informed decisions about their healthcare providers.

The government will post the information on a searchable public website called “Open Payments.” The companies must also report ownership and investment interests held by dentists and their immediate family members.

If you have questions about the Sunshine Act, you are in luck—the ADA has answers. ADA members may access the Frequently Asked Questions online. This member-only resource addresses twenty questions about the Act, including:
What information will be included in a report?

  • How can a dentist find out that a report has been filed?
  • What can a dentist do if a report is inaccurate?

Find more at ADA.org.

Visit Chicago and be a Champion for Evidence-Based Dentistry

ADA Headquarters BuildingEvidence-based dentistry (EBD) is based on three important domains: the best available scientific evidence, a dentist’s clinical skill and judgment, and each individual patient’s needs and preferences

EBD Champions 2.0: Implementing Science in Practice, taking place May 9-10 at ADA Headquarters in Chicago, will build on your existing EBD skills and take you to a new level in the dissemination and implementation of scientific research.

Favorite EBD speakers Janet Clarkson, Dental Health Research Unit University of Dundee, and Bob Weyant, University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine, return in 2014 to discuss:

  • dissemination and implementation research
  • evidence-based clinical treatment and outcomes
  • behavioral change of practitioners

Information about the complete curriculum and new speakers is coming soon. Participants will receive 10 hours of continuing education credit. The registration fee is $150 for ADA members and $225 for non-members.

For more information contact ebd@ada.org. And be sure to check out the ADA Center for Evidence-Based Dentistry where you’ll find on-demand access to systematic reviews, summaries and clinical recommendations that translate the latest scholarly findings into a user-friendly format.

What is Your Style of Leadership? (You have Six Choices)

leader in front of a groupResearcher Daniel Goleman studied 3,000 executives over the course of three years to develop a model of six leadership styles. The original report was published by Harvard Business Review (registration required) but many blogs have referenced his work since the original was published in 2000.

The six styles Goleman identified are:

  • Coercive leaders demand immediate obedience. Do what I tell you.
  • Pace-setting leaders expect excellence and self-direction. Do as I do, now.
  • Authoritative leaders move people towards a vision. Come with me.
  • Affiliative leaders value and create emotional bonds and harmony. People come first.
  • Democratic leaders build consensus through participation and collaboration. What do you think?
  • Coaching leaders will develop people, allowing them to try different approaches in an open way. Try it.

If you’d like to increase your leadership skills, no matter what your style, please join us at the ADA 28th New Dentist Conference taking place in Kansas City, Missouri July 17-19, 2014 at Sheraton Kansas City, Crown Center (mark your calendar). In addition to a full day of leadership development, the Conference includes:

  • hands-on endodontic and implant CE courses at UMKC School of Dentistry
  • Friday night social event at PBR Big Sky in the city’s Power & Light District
  • breakfast-and-learn sessions; all-inclusive lunches

See you in Kansas City!

Save the Fairy Tale Kingdom with your Toothbrush!

The American Dental Association is proud to be one of the founding members of the Ad Council’s Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives. As part of its successful Kids’ Healthy Mouths campaign, the Partnership recently released Toothsavers, a new, free mobile gaming app. This interactive game encourages kids to save friendly fairy tale characters from the evil, cavity-creating sorceress who cast a wicked, tooth-rotting spell on the kingdom. The goal of the game is to motivate children to save their own teeth by brushing their teeth two minutes, twice a day.

Here’s how you can help spread the word:

Share this game with your patients to motivate parents to take action to reduce their children’s risk of oral disease by making sure their kids are brushing their teeth for two minutes, twice a day.

Can you make a final impression in 20 minutes without a lab custom tray? Want to learn how while earning CE?

ADA365 logoWatch the complete fabrication of an implant overdenture prosthesis from start to finish in the ADA365 presentation Seeing is Believing on Friday, February 7, 2014.

View the latest methods in a digital examination and the newest impression and jaw recording procedures. Everything except the actual laboratory procedure is shown right in front of the camera, giving you an ideal perspective.

Seeing is Believing with instructor Joseph Massad, DDS

Friday, February 7, 2014

11 am-3 pm CST

Fee: $99 (ADA members only)

CE Credits: 2.5

This webcast is a presentation of one of the most popular Education in the Round courses from the ADA 2013 annual meeting. Only ADA members can earn CE credit by watching this webinar. Dr. Massad will also be available afterward to answer your questions and to offer a sneak preview of the courses he will be presenting at ADA 2014 – America’s Dental Meeting, Oct. 9-14 in San Antonio.

After this course, you will be able to:

1. Make a final impression in 20 minutes without a lab custom tray

2. Complete a jaw recording with a gothic arch tracing device

3. Create a cameo impression

To register, visit ADA.org/ADA365

What Happens if you Want out of the Contract?

breaking-a-contractLast week we blogged about the ADA contract analysis service that offers member-dentists assistance in developing a clear understanding of the obligations and expectations for all parties.

On occasion, you may wish to terminate a contract that you feel is not working for you. In many cases, it would be best to fulfill your obligations under the contract and then elect not to renew it at the end of the contract term. But in some cases, you may decide that you would like to get out of the contract before the end date.

The ADA Center for Professional Success has a feature Strategies for an Unwanted Contract in Your Dental Practice. And while the piece is not a substitute for legal advice (you should always discuss your legal options with your own attorney) you’ll find useful information to help you frame your decision.

The ADA Center for Professional Success is a member-only resource, exclusively for ADA members. And while you are there, check out the other resources including Be a Great Boss, Checklist for Terminating an Employee and Using Flexible Benefit Plans in your Practice.

ADA Contract Analysis Service

signing a documentBy the time you’ve navigated your way through the pages of a contract you might have given yourself a headache. It’s important you understand what you’re signing. But it’s also important to understand there is help available.

The ADA Contract Analysis Service provides members with information about a proposed contract to make it easier to analyze its terms. The service analyzes:

  • dental provider contracts with third party payers
  • dental management service organization contracts
  • contracts that offer dental school students scholarships or loans in exchange for a commitment for future employment

The analysis is not a substitute for legal advice.

Utilize this free ADA member benefit by submitting an unsigned copy of the contract and a request for analysis to your state dental society.

For the Patient — Keeping Medicine Safely in the Home

prescription drugsThe statistics are frightening — according to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 60,000 children end up in emergency rooms each year because they got into medicines while their caregiver wasn’t looking. And a 2011 survey by the Partnership at Drugfree.org (PDF Link) found that almost one-in-five teenagers reported that they had abused prescription drugs at least once.

The January 2014 issue of the Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA) includes a fact sheet for you to share with patients about keeping medicine safely in the home.

The article includes suggestions for safety in the home — one suggestion is to program the poison control number (800.222.1222) into your phone’s contact list. The article also includes suggestions for keeping medicine from being abused, including keeping track of the amount of medicine that should be in a bottle.

Unlike other portions of JADA, the print version of this page may be clipped and photocopied as a handout for patients without reprint permission from the ADA Publishing Division.

North Carolina Dental Students Making a Difference in Malawi

ADA Foundation logoYesterday we posted about the ADA Foundation Bud Tarrson Dental School Student Community Leadership Award which recognizes dental student outreach to vulnerable communities within the U.S.

The ADA Foundation also recognizes one dental school student program each year for demonstrating excellence in providing services to underserved populations outside of the U.S. through the Dr. Thomas J. Zwemer Award. Established in 2012, the Zwemer Award provides $5,000 to one dental school on behalf of the students’ winning outreach program.

The winner of the 2013 ADAF Zwemer Award is the University of North Carolina School of Dentistry for its Malawi Dental Project.

Why Malawi? As the project’s blog notes, the country of almost 14 million people has fewer than 15 dentists.

Congratulations to these hardworking dental students for making a difference!