Dental Practice Broker Articles
5 Simple Tips to Help Dental Patients Cut Down On Sugar
Routine check-ups can provide a consistent income for many dental practices, however, it’s important to remember that at the end of the day, most dentists entered the industry out of a real care for the oral hygiene of their patients.
It’s therefore in their best interest when dealing with clients, to educate them as to the hazardous nature of sugar in their diets.
When explaining anything to the general public, however, it’s vital that you break things down into small, actionable steps if you want to make real change.
Whether you are looking to sell your practice or hold onto it for many years to come, educating patients is important for the entire dental community, so don’t hesitate to offer advice when people come in for a check-up.
Here are 5 simple tips for dental patients to help them cut down on sugar.
- Look for the secret sugars
Most people think of sugar as something that they only find in sweets or junk food. It’s important to let people know that even fruits can have high doses of sugar and therefore too much fruit (or fruit juice) isn’t always a good thing.
Also, when buying groceries, advise patients to look out for the other names under which ‘sugar’ may be presented, such as sucrose, maltose, molasses, glucose, fructose, corn syrup and many others.
- Eliminate sugared breakfast cereals
Another important point is to watch for sugar in breakfast cereals. Most will have upwards of 10 grams of sugar per serving, equivalent to a tablespoon of sugar, (and many of us may have 2-3 recommended servings of cereal).
Tell your patients to try a sugar-free alternative such as porridge or oats and to add their own sweetening in the form of Stevia or Xylitol.
- Start small
Remember that if your patients are heavily reliant on sugar they may even have withdrawals, their palate may be too accustomed to sugared foods. In this case, switching them completely off sugar could make them associate low-sugar foods with poor taste.
Instead, advise beginning with small changes such as switching from dark chocolate to milk chocolate at dessert time and putting honey in your coffee as opposed to standard, processed sugars.
- Educate patients on sugar alternatives
A lot of the time patients may be completely unaware that they are choosing the unhealthy option.
If you can educate them as to alternatives that have less sugar in them, it will go a long way to cutting down their sugar intake.
- Always brush after eating sugar
While consuming sugar is one problem, letting it sit in your mouth all day is another. Try to encourage patients to always brush after consuming sugar, or at least each some sugar-free gum to try and remove as much of it as possible.
The more value you can offer you dental patients, the more likely they are to come back to you. So make sure you take every opportunity you can to offer them useful information.
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