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Unpacking Dr. Ali Afshar’s Tacklebox

Updated: Oct 26


The slang Dr. Ali Afshar uses to describe his dental repertoire is “tacklebox”, and his tacklebox includes implant surgery, restoration, and treatment planning. He uses both free-hand and guided surgeries, which is a skill he thinks many lose in dental schools that promote only guided surgeries. If you only learn guided surgery, you may be missing out on the technical knowledge needed to help your patients plan out their treatment and healing processes.


Dental students are graduating school and immediately want to become implant dentists without fully understanding the precision that goes into this practice and the healing that is necessary after surgery, and Dr. Afshar sees a lot of rehabs and complicated cases of implants that need to be repaired or completely taken out and redone. For him, the biggest weakness in our industry is diagnostics and treatment planning.


This is where his tacklebox comes in handy. Knowing how to perform surgery is one thing but understanding the human body and its ability to heal can help you better understand your role as a dentist in this healing process. Every patient is different, and sometimes they aren’t all going to fit neatly into your guided procedure or surgery.


That’s why Dr. Afshar created Peer Education Dentistry. It is a program that provides professional mentorship to fellow dentists in Canada looking for hands-on training to build their own tackle boxes of skills. Dr. Afshar runs a referral-only dental practice in Alberta, Canada, which has different marketing laws than in the US. This makes referrals the best-case scenario when it comes to promoting his practice. He relies on implant surgery and focuses on chair-side efficiency to attract new patients through word-of-mouth.


In This Episode:

  • Different types of dental surgeries and which Dr. Afshar prefers 12:44

  • The tools and technology Dr. Afshar uses in guided surgeries 14:58

  • How having a tacklebox of skills gives you an edge in referral marketing 28:20

  • How Dr. Afshar balances teaching and public speaking 42:07

  • What it means to be in the unique position of being a GP dentist 50:08

  • Dental Slang Dr. Afshar picked up as an oral surgeon 51:49


Some Questions We Discuss

  • What makes Dr. Afshar’s dental practice so unique? 2:11

  • How do you find the right dental patient for your practice? 17:22

  • Why is implant dentistry so difficult? 20:52

  • How did a skiing accident change Dr. Afshar’s perspective on dentistry? 30:35

  • How are DSOs affecting the multi-practice model in North America? 33:58

  • How did Dr. Afshar get involved with the Kois Center? 38:00

  • What inspired Dr. Afshar to start Peer Education Dentistry? 43:19

  • Is DSO, General Practice, or AI the future of dentistry? 47:08


Connect with Dr. Afshar on Instagram @afshar_dds

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