“Yamamoto and Lee is a family dental office dedicated to providing top quality dentistry and overall service to our patients.” (from our mission statement)

We take our mission very seriously and always do our best to live up to it.  Yet despite our best efforts, we know we will never please everyone.  So when a patient leaves our practice, we like to find out why they’re leaving so that we can hopefully learn from our mistakes and improve our service.  But then, some of them come back!

We understand that there are many reasons why people leave a dental office to go see another dentist.  What we fail to realize is that people don’t always leave because they are unsatisfied.  Sometimes people leave because their insurance changed and they now have a list of dentists they must see if they want their dental work to be covered by insurance.  Or sometimes they leave because finances are tight, and they think they can save money by going to a dentist with lower fees (and there’s always someone with lower fees).  One returning patient this past week said that even though his insurance changed, he’d rather come here and pay out of pocket because the dentist he saw under his plan tried to get him to agree to treatment which wasn’t covered, and it would have cost him more than what we had recommended.  Another returning patient came back because the “cheaper” dentist wanted to replace all his fillings and do full mouth deep cleanings, which we didn’t think he needed.  (In my next post, I will discuss the best way to save money at the dentist.)

And then there are the times when a patient leaves because there was something about our service they didn’t like, only to return when they come to realize that we had done nothing wrong.  A couple years ago we had one patient leave quite upset because I had recommended one of her teeth needed a root canal.  When her tooth started aching recently, she asked to come back.

It seems like more patients than ever are returning to our dental practice.  Maybe it’s a sign that our economy is turning around.  Or maybe it’s just a variation of chance.  Whatever the reason, we like to think that maybe we’re not doing such a bad job of achieving our mission.

What do YOU think?

Dr. Steve

Roseville Family Dentist

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