Happy New Year!

Jan. 17, 2014
This is my favorite time of the year. As the song goes, "It's the most wonderful time of the year!" The children all come home and we are a family once again, if only for a few days.

by Joe Blaes

This is my favorite time of the year. As the song goes, "It's the most wonderful time of the year!" The children all come home and we are a family once again, if only for a few days. The grandkids fill up the house, and the cousins get to know one another again. I try to take off a couple of weeks and even stay away from the computer. It is a time for family!

With this issue we welcome you to another exciting year of opportunities in dentistry. This is without a doubt the very best time to be a dentist! In celebrating the beginning of the new year, it is a time to be retrospective in checking how we did over the past year, and then to look forward. This is a great time to spend some time with your team in brainstorming exercises and setting goals to improve the practice.

Our team at Dental Economics has been brainstorming already, and we have something new you'll "like." In honor of National Children's Dental Health Month, this February we'll be exploring topics in pediatric dentistry on the Dental Economics Facebook page. Don't miss this exciting spotlight -- "like" our Facebook page today at http://www.facebook.com/DentalEconomics.

As we start this new year, I hope we can set a goal of opening the lines of communication between dentists and the dental team. We should strive to do this on all levels of our dental world. I have never been involved in the politics of dentistry other than to serve on a lot of committees, but I would hope that our dental leaders on all levels would foster this improved communication between all members of our dental team. Remember, it is impossible to do it alone!

In December, I spoke at the Greater New York Dental Meeting on Sunday. Both of my half-day workshops were sold out to an enthusiastic group of dentists. This meeting was a great place to see old friends and to make new friendships as well. I was honored to interview the president of the National Dental Association, Dr. Edward Chapple. I first met him at the organization's annual meeting in Washington, D.C., last summer. Dr. Chapple has been very involved in dentistry and in his church. He is one of my new friends. Next month, Dental Economics will feature a supplement on the history of the National Dental Association. I know you will enjoy it!

I came home from New York on Wednesday and then left on Thursday for Orlando. I was invited to attend the annual meeting of Heartland Dental. This year they hosted more than 700 of their member dentists and their spouses. The program was outstanding, starting with a great motivational message from Coach Lou Holtz. Next, Fred Joyal, one of the founders of 1-800-DENTIST gave an excellent message on how to market your practice. The Saturday morning wrap-up session was exceptional. It is often said that actions speak louder than words and no one "hears" them better than retired FBI agent Joe Navarro, one of the world's leading authorities on reading nonverbal communications. He definitely raised the communication skills of every person in that room by helping them learn what every BODY is saying. He has written several books on the subject.

Many organizations give back to those less fortunate. In May 2013, the Smile Generation kicked off the "100 Wells for Ethiopia" campaign with the intent of raising $1 million to fund 100 wells for the people in the Tigray region of Ethiopia. One hundred percent of the generous donations given to the 100 Wells for Ethiopia campaign will go directly to charity: water to build sustainable, community-owned water projects.

The Smile Generation announced that its trusted clinicians and their community of generous patients, along with team members and strategic vendor partners, have raised more than $1 million for charity and are funding 100 wells in Ethiopia. The charity is a nonprofit organization that is dedicated to bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing countries.

Ultradent Products, Inc. set a new record for its annual "Hunger Games"–themed food drive this year, raising 352,088 lbs. of food for the Utah Food Bank and Typhoon Haiyan victims through AmeriCares. Ultradent set its 2013 goal at 200,000 lbs. of food. The donation translates to $87,659 in total, and more than $43,000 for each organization. Each year, Ultradent employees have consistently increased the amount of food/money raised during its annual food drive, and this year is no exception as Ultradent increased its donation amount by 65%.

I want to take this opportunity to thank you, the reader, for taking the time to select Dental Economics out of the huge stack of mail that you get every month and then taking the time to read what I have selected out of the many articles that I receive and read every month. Please accept my heartfelt thanks for making Dental Economics the best-read magazine in the dental industry.

I sincerely hope and pray that your 2014 is the best it can be!

Joe Blaes, DDS, Editor
email: [email protected]

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