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You no longer have to dread your next dental visit. Dr. Ann Kirol from Carolina Smile Design in Rock Hill is out to change the way people feel about going to the dentist. Read our interview below to find out how Ann is succeeding at making the dentist a positive experience.

Q: Do you think people have negative perceptions of a dentist’s office? If so, what do you think people typically think of when they think about going to the dentist?
A: People definitely have an overall negative perception of the dentist office. This stems from several factors with the most prominent being dental anxiety or fear. Many people have had past traumatic dental experiences that prevent them from seeking regular dental care. Additionally, many people are intimidated by a lack of ability of the dentist and their staff to explain, educate and communicate with a patient as to what their dental needs are and why certain procedures or treatments may be recommended. Many times, patients do not feel that the dentist takes time to listen and address their fears and concerns. Cost is another factor that is a major deterrent to seeking dental care. Lastly, time is a factor. People have busy lives and schedules. They dread the thought of spending hours in the dentist office. 

Q: How do you plan to change this negative perception by changing the aesthetics of the office?
A: There are many ways that I address these negative perceptions of the dentist office. This begins with our staff and their positive, friendly and approachable attitude. We love our jobs and feel that it is a privilege to help patients to understand, improve and maintain their oral health. It begins with listening to our patients, addressing their concerns, answering their questions and educating them as to their choices. We place an emphasis on building relationships with people. We want our patients to feel a personal connection and be at ease to ask questions.

Our office aesthetics are a key component of this as well; we have a welcoming and comfortable decor with the office feel being one that is intended to feel warm and inviting like home- not a cold, sterile environment. We have relaxing art work, coffee and water, clean and uncluttered work spaces with windows and light, and most importantly, the latest in modern dental equipment. Our patient chairs also have a massage feature to assist the patient in feeling relaxed.

We are proactive in assisting our patients with the cost component. We participate with most dental plans. For our patients that do not have dental insurance, we offer an in-office membership plan that provides a discount on regular maintenance as well as any other recommended procedures. Care Credit is another option for patients who prefer to pay in installments over time.

In order to address the time factor, we make every effort to accommodate our patients in scheduling appointments to fit their needs. Some people prefer longer appointments, some shorter…we are very flexible in scheduling this way. We also offer the CEREC same day crown option. This eliminates the need for multiple appointments for certain crowns, veneers, inlays and onlays.  

Q: What new emotions do you want people to feel when they are at your office?
A: I want my patients to enjoy coming to the dentist. This is why we emphasize a personal relationship. I want them to be relaxed and comfortable. Dental visits should be happy and stress free. One of our favorite services to offer is a complimentary cleaning appointment for brides and/or grooms to be. We want to restore healthy smiles and be a partner in preventative care and overall oral health.

Q: What feedback have you received from current patients about the look and feel of your office?
A: We get positive feedback all the time regarding the look and feel of our office. Comments like, “it’s beautiful,” “it’s so clean,” “your equipment is up to date and modern,” “I felt relaxed,” “your staff is so friendly and knowledgeable,” “I enjoyed coming to the dentist,” are common and we take great pride in hearing from patients. Our website is a great place for patients to find the latest information on our practice, as well as on social media sites such as Facebook and Instagram.

Q: Why is it so important for you to change the look and feel of your office?
A: All of the aforementioned things are so important to providing a unique look and feel to our office. We are dedicated to our motto, “A better life begins with a beautiful smile.” We want the look and feel of our office to reflect our commitment to our patients.

I don’t know about you, but the massage chairs certainly have me sold! If you are ready for a more relaxing and enjoyable dentist experience, make an appointment at Carolina Smile Design today. Your mouth will thank you.