Maintaining and Expanding Margins Are More Critical Than Ever in 2021
Many of us, as business leaders, lived through two unbelievable events that had devastating impact on the US economy and the dental industry. In 2001, our economy was tremendously impacted by the attack on the twin towers in New York City and other terror attacks across the nation. It launched our country into a decades-long war, the GDP dipped and unemployment rose to 5%. Then in 2008, the financial crisis hit and again our economy was devastated as $8 trillion in stock market value was wiped out from 2007-2009. The unemployment rate jumped to 10% and plummeting home values totaled over $10 trillion. The dental industry’s growth stalled dramatically and has been recovering ever since that event. Now, the unthinkable has happened as our industry ground to a near-complete halt in March and April of 2020 due to a strangely named virus. As business leaders, it was imperative that we acted quickly and decisively to maintain our businesses. Now that the dental recovery has settled to a “new normal”, finding ways to maintain and expand operational margins is critical to success in 2021.
Add Adjunctive Treatment To Your Hygiene Protocols
The NIDCR (National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research) estimates that 75% of U.S. adults (~157MM) have some form of periodontal disease. Gum disease is just as prevalent now as it was in the 80s, 90s, 00s – and it’s not getting any better. Why? Because it’s not being controlled. Although flossing is considered the gold standard, most people brush their teeth using a conventional toothbrush and do not floss.
Periodontal disease is linked to many serious health issues (Oral Systemic Connection). Studies have found that people who have periodontal disease are twice as likely to also have coronary artery disease than those who do not have gum disease. It is known that the immune system fights gum infections to keep oral bacteria from spreading to other parts of the body. Gum-disease bacteria can enter the bloodstream and move to the heart, creating life-threatening infections in previously damaged heart valves. All patients can benefit from treatments that prohibit bacteria.
SRPs and LAAs are amazing hygiene protocols and provide an excellent source of production revenue and wide operational margins for a practice. Adding an effective adjunctive at-home treatment to these protocols can dramatically enhance hygiene production and operational margins. New perio therapy systems, such as Perio Restore®, combine a hydrogen peroxide gel with a fabricated tray, offering a great opportunity for the practice and their patients. Hydrogen peroxide is well documented as an effective medicament to mitigate perio challenges. The use of hydrogen peroxide has been shown to increase oxygen to diseased tissue to improve beneficial bioactivity (growth of healthy tissue). A 10-minute exposure to 1.7% hydrogen peroxide aqueous gel can debride cell walls within typical dental biofilm. Hydrogen peroxide breaks down and loosens dental plaque and calculus, which can improve overall gingival health in patients at risk of periodontal disease. Systems such as Perio Restore, hold the hydrogen peroxide gel in place with a specially designed tray to allow for deep penetration into periodontal pockets to fight bacteria and keep it from recolonizing, preventing further infection. Perio Restore customized trays feature unique reservoirs designed to treat below the patient’s gum line and interproximally to significantly reduce bacteria with each application.1
In May and April, nearly 9 in 10 Americans were under a stay at home order. This new environment created a new culture of stay and work at home. This also created a challenge for many dental patients who needed to see their dentist for hygiene appointments. As COVID 19 continues, hygiene appointments are still at risk of being interrupted making it more imperative for practices to provide additional perio treatments that can be applied at home. Perio treatment systems like Perio Restore can help solve the gaps between office treatment. Using Perio Restore is easy. Depending on the patient’s need, Perio Restore is applied 1 to 4 times a day. Patients simply apply a thin layer of Perio Restore gel inside each customized tray channel and firmly press the tray onto their teeth. Patients will wear their trays for 10-15 minutes then rinse their mouth or brush/floss their teeth after use. Trays must be worn for a minimum of 10 minutes per treatment to achieve clinical benefits of the homecare gel. Patients should be instructed to bring their trays in for each dental appointment to ensure they still fit and are in good condition.
Expand Operational Margins With Adjunctive Treatment
When implemented successfully, as part of a practice’s regular hygiene protocol, systems such as Perio Restore can generate significant production revenue for a practice. These tray and gel systems have high patient acceptance due to the easy at-home application. The retail price of the fabricated tray is between $650-$800 and the 3oz tube of gel retails for $20-$25. Typically, a patient will need 8-12 tubes a year depending on their level of perio. Just 120 patients treated per year in 1 practice results in over $100K in production revenue with a gross profit margin of 60 to 80%. Many practices combine this adjunctive therapy with other perio protocols and offer their patients a package price for comprehensive hygiene treatment. It should be noted that treatment such as Perio Restore is a fee for service treatment.
Transition Your Practices Ortho Patients to At Home Perio Maintenance
Clear aligner orthodontic patients are always concerned about the significant investment they made for their smile. Perio treatment systems, such as Perio Restore, are a great way to extend the health of the patient’s new smile. Perio Restore trays can be printed from a patient’s final orthodontic scan by simply sending to the lab (DenMat lab) as a STL file for fabrication of a customized perio tray. This allows a practice to effectively extend the treatment of a patient beyond the initial orthodontic treatment. It is a natural presentation to the patient (“protect your investment in your smile”). When implemented effectively in a practice operation, this treatment can add significant production revenue for a practice.
Periodontal disease is linked to many serious health issues and providing new adjunctive at-home perio treatment to patients is critical for practices in this stay at home, work at home environment. Systems, such as Perio Restore, extend clinical perio treatment to the patient’s home. In addition, it provides an exceptional opportunity for a DSO to expand operating margins in 2021 in an environment where maintaining and expanding these margins are critical.
Discover how you can add over $100K in
production revenue to each of your DSO’s
practices by implementing Perio Restore!
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1. Eckhard Alt, Francesca Leipold, Danica Milatovic, Günter Lehmann, Sybille Heinz, Albert Schömig, Hydrogen peroxide for prevention of bacterial growth on polymer biomaterials, The Annals of Thoracic Surgery, Volume 68, Issue 6, 1999, Pages 2123-2128, ISSN 0003-4975, https://doi.org/10.1016/S0003-4975(99)00832-2. (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0003497599008322)
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