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Guest Dr. Alan Mead

Updated: Oct 15, 2019

Dr. Alan Mead talks glamping, being a plain jane dentist and the skinny on his favorite slang for the dental burs he uses.


Dr. Alan Mead is a podcasting guru and one of the inspirations behind the production of the Dental Slang podcast. Alan has been listening to podcasts since the early 2000s, downloading them to his mp3 player (if anyone remembers those anymore). He’s always been fascinated about people coming together remotely to talk about the things they’re passionate about, and today he’s hosting two podcasts of his own. 

“Alan is being completely honest when he says he’s never called a dental tool by it’s real name. In fact, many of us can claim the same. This can cause a lot of problems when we start using the same slang for different tools.”

But his podcasting knowledge isn’t the only reason we invited him onto Dental Slang. Alan is sharing the slang he uses when referring to his dental tools. In fact, we all use slang for our tools. Most dental tools have terrifying names, with words like “blade” in them. No patient wants to hear words like that while they’re sitting in your chair! For that reason, we all come up with our own unique, sometimes completely nonsensical, words and phrases to describe the tools we use. 


Alan is being completely honest when he says he’s never called a dental tool by it’s real name. In fact, many of us can claim the same. This can cause a lot of problems when we start using the same slang for different tools. For Alan, he’ll call too many of his burs “footballs”, downright confusing his team so they end up bringing him all of the football-shaped burs rather than risk bringing the wrong one by accident. 


On today’s episode, the three of us are sharing the different analogies we use with our patients. There’s slang we use to describe our tools, and there’s stories we tell to help patients understand the procedures we’re performing on their mouths. More than that, we use analogies every day to help patients understand the billing process and insurance claims. Anyone practicing in the dental industry today knows the woes of the in-network vs. the out-of-network patient. And sometimes it’s better not to talk about insurance at all. But we can’t avoid that conversation forever. Especially when many of us, like Jodi, are fee-for-service offices. This can often change the dynamic if your patient relationships, and she shares her unique analogies for helping patients understand the charges they’re seeing. 


Click here to listen to this podcast.


In This Episode You Will Learn:

What “glamping” really means 1:43

How Alan’s mentorship shaped the production of the Dental Slang Podcast 9:34 

All of the jokes you’ve ever heard in a dental office 12:48

Our favorite slang and analogies to use with patients 25:27

The slang we use to help patients understand dental insurance 34:46

Our favorite analogies to use on patients who don’t floss 45:19


Some Questions We Discuss:

What does Alan mean when he calls himself a “plain jane” dentist? 4:15

How did Alan create a social life online? 6:35

Why did Alan want to start a second podcast? 8:40

Which slang does Alan use in his dental office? 11:20

Where does the ridiculous slang for dental tools come from? 17:30

Which phrase from Jodi’s slang repertoire is Alan going to steal? 32:11


Links

Check out Alan’s podcasts: Dental Hacks Podcast and The Alan Mead Dental Experience

Get in touch with Dr. Alan Mead at the Dental Hacks Nation Facebook

Give it a listen: The Skeptic’s Guide to the Universe Podcast

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