Oral health can impact a patient’s overall health, and that is why it’s so critical for dentists to educate the public about the importance of dental hygiene. Dentistry doesn’t have the same emphasis socially that the health of the rest of the body does.
Whilst public healthcare is free, dental care under the NHS only covers those under the age of 18 (19 if enrolled in school full-time), pregnant women or women who have had a baby in the last 12 months, or if patients receiving treatment in hospital.
Without a full understanding of dental hygiene’s significance, 39% of British adults choose to forgo regular visits to the dentist. Dentists can use online marketing campaigns to educate the public about the importance of preventative care and increase the likelihood that patients schedule regular appointments.
The Information Epidemic
A significant factor in why people don’t keep up with their oral care as diligently as they should is that they are simply unaware of what that process entails. If it was not taught at home by their parents and they have failed to visit the dentist regularly as an adult, the basics of a good oral hygiene routine have never been explained adequately to some individuals.
In 2018 a study found that 30% of people who did not visit the dentist in the last two years cited the reason as a lack of knowledge of dental issues and the potential consequences. The unfortunate reality is that many adults are only visiting the dentist when oral pain occurs, rather than for preventative care.
Preaching Preventative Care
Perhaps the most effective way to improve dental care in our society is to educate people about the practice and benefits of preventative dental care. Preventive dentistry is the best way to keep teeth healthy, strong, and to avoid costly dental procedures in the future. These are four essential practices of preventative dental care that dentists should include in their online marketing campaigns.
- Brushing teeth two times daily to fight plaque and odour, causing bacteria. Selecting a toothpaste containing fluoride is also very important.
- Flossing once per day is necessary to remove food between the teeth and to stimulate the gums.
- Visiting the dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings allows your dentist to catch any developing cavities or other problems early so your dentist can treat them before they become severe.
- Eating a balanced diet has a lasting impact on your oral health. Certain foods like dairy products contain nutrients that build healthy teeth and combat bacteria that damage your enamel.
Your marketing campaign should emphasise that oral health affects a patient’s entire body. Reach a broader spectrum of patients by discussing oral health’s significance for children and seniors. Discuss how regular hygiene can help children’s adult teeth become strong and allow seniors to keep their natural teeth longer.
Educating everyone on the benefits of preventative care can lead to a healthier general population since poor oral health is also linked to diabetes, cancer, osteoporosis and heart disease.
How to Spread the Message
Dental marketing is critical to inform the public of the dangers associated with neglecting oral hygiene. At present, social media platforms are becoming an increasingly accessible way to reach more people with critical information.
Utilising networking applications like Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to target more of the population with valuable knowledge about preventative dentistry is one way dental practices can help in educating more people.
Gaining a following online is a natural step today for any company. If your dental practice has already developed an online presence, you are in a position to spread the message of why oral hygiene is so crucial for everyone.
Methods of Marketing
Once you have developed an online presence for your dental practice, you need to keep your patients engaged. Posting regularly on platforms like Instagram, Facebook and Twitter with aesthetically appealing photos or relevant information about the current events at the practice are essential to get noticed.
Community ad campaigns on a Facebook, live stream chats with your dental staff and giveaways can also increase engagement with your users and keep them coming back to your practice.
Appointment reminders are also a valuable tool in having your patients partake in preventative care. In today’s world, many people are always on the go, on the phone, answering emails and not thinking too far in advance.
Having a reminder system that allows your patients to choose if they want to have contact through email, text, or a phone call helps you connect with them most effectively. A friendly reminder in the right medium can sometimes be all it takes to get a patient to come in for their six-month cleaning, that they would have otherwise forgotten to book.
Dental Care Affects Us All
The education of the public on the importance of oral hygiene and preventive dentistry is critical to the health of society as a whole. If more people keep their teeth healthy, the overall health of a nation improves because so many other medical conditions stem from poor dental hygiene. A healthy society benefits everyone, and as dentists, you can use the marketing tools available and reach out to patients to help them understand what they can do to improve their quality of life through dental care.
An author of Namaste UI, published several articles focused on blogging, business, web design & development, e-commerce, finance, health, lifestyle, marketing, social media, SEO, travel.
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