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Patients Lie to Dentists All the Time

Trust Their Teeth, Not Their Words

Dentists, you’ll be shocked by this breaking news: your patients might be lying to you!

A poll of 1,000 Americans (commissioned by Philips Sonicare) found that over 40% of adults admit to lying to their dentists, claiming that they always brushed for the recommended time. In addition, 25% said they lie about how frequently they floss.

And if those numbers seem high, keep in mind that they’re actually a lot higher. It’s a reasonable assumption that some liars lie about lying…

So why do patients lie? To avoid the disapproval of authority figures. To avoid embarrassment. To look better. To not get in trouble. To make the dentist like them.

In addition, the poll found that patients frequently lie to receptionists about why they’re cancelling their appointment.

Significantly, it also found that many patients often do not tell their dentists about other serious health problems they may have.

In the end, dental health care practitioners shouldn’t rely too much on the honesty of their patients’ responses. However, by focusing on building healthy relationships with patients, doctors can improve both the oral health of their patients and their dental practice’s bottom line.

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