These days, facial and oral piercings are commonly accepted among many young people in North America. Does this kind of personal adornment represent a dental management dilemma when it comes to hiring good associates, hygienists and front desk personnel?
The Wealthy Dentist wanted to know, so we asked this survey question:
Do any members of your dental team have facial piercings?
A 79% majority of dentists responding to our survey answered No, definitely not!
Some dentists responded based on health and personal preference:
“It’s enough to have piercings on ears – the face, lip, mouth are really stretching it, both from a visual standpoint and a health perspective (oral piercings have been shown to damage teeth and supporting tissues).” New Hampshire dentist
“UGLY! Especially the damage and infections caused.” General dentist
“I put up with tattoos. That’s enough!” District of Columbia dentist
Some dentists look at it from a business standpoint:
“Not the professional image I want to project.” Illinois dentist
“I do not believe it represents my practice. Save it for tatoo shop or Barnes and Noble. Attire and dress code is outlined in manual.” Illinois dentist
Despite these observations, 21% of our respondents said they had a team member with a pierced nose, tongue, lip or tongue. (Nobody reported pierced eyebrows on their staff members — but that’s a possibility, too.)
“It’s cultural so I don’t mind,” answered a Sri Lankan dental implantologist who has a team member with a a pierced nose. “But definitely not any other piercing,” he added.
“Depends on the size of the jewelry. Tasteful facial piercings are acceptable. Oral piercings are acceptable for employees as far as hiring them, but we do not recommend for dental reasons.” California dentist
Another dentist, who reports staff having tongue and lip piercings, handles it in a very conservative manner: “My staff is NOT entitled to wear their piercings while they are on the clock.”
Here are the takeaways from our dentist survey:
- You’re entitled to set your own dental practice management policy about facial piercings, but it pays to be aware of what’s culturally acceptable in your market.
- When it comes to hiring, you also have the option to ask potential candidates to remove the jewelry while at work. That way, you don’t have to exclude someone who might otherwise be a stellar addition to your dental team!
Do you see any facial or oral piercings in your dental team’s future?