Oral health versus Systemic health

Episode 346,   Feb 08, 2022, 10:00 PM

Chuck Reinerston

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Dr. Charles Reinertsen started his dental career in 1979 after graduating from the University of Florida’s College of Dentistry. He opened his family dental practice in Tavares and has been serving the dental needs of local residents for almost 40 years. 

Dr. Chuck Reinertsen once thought as many Dentists do: the key to earning more was to produce more. After all, his central Florida general dental practice grew steadily since 1979; his waiting room always seemed full, and he had a loyal base of patients. What also grew steadily during the same period was his overhead. 

So at the age of 61, Chuck was at a crossroads: he had not saved enough to maintain his current lifestyle in retirement. His strategy to improve his finances and hope for aggressive retirement savings growth was risky. He was betting that a significant increase in production would fill more chairs and therefore lead to a similar increase in his personal income. 

All this activity would hopefully keep his overhead in check while he would divert some of that new income into his retirement savings. 

While these plans for expansion were exciting, they kept the good doctor up at night. That’s a lot of birds to hit with one stone, but what other options were there?

Episode timestamps

2:36 - As a pioneer of talking about oral and systemic health for over 30 years, what was it like talking about these links in the early time in your career?
5:36 - What sort of systemic diseases are typically linked to oral diseases?
7:44 - How broadly has this link between systemic and oral diseases been adopted by our medical colleagues?
10:58 - What’s the transition from ‘tooth mechanic’ to ‘health provider’ look like?
14:31 - The gateway is the new patient exam, what are you asking new patients and how are you educating them?
18:16 - In general practice, what is the awareness of all this?
24:09 - Where are some good resources for someone to find out more about dental disease and systemic disease?

Quotes from this episode with Dr. Chuck Reinserston

“If you feel the mouth is not part of the body, when you go to work on Monday, leave your mouth at home” 

“We are not tooth mechanics, we are health care providers”

“The more time you spend at home taking care of your teeth, the less time you spend in my chair”

“Spend 8 to 10 minutes thoroughly cleaning your teeth”

“Your reputation goes way up with those patients cause they realise that this is someone that not only cares about my teeth and my smile and my chewing, but my whole body …”

“... Help people connect the dots between the infections they have in their mouth that are pain free, that affect the heart, the brain, the pancreas, the whole body”

“You take care of the dental situation and their medical situation greatly improves”