Let’s admit it: we’re all scared to death by the sound of a dentist’s drill! It invokes cartoon-like visions of an evil dentist, grinning beneath that surgical mask as they peer into our mouth, sharp tools in hand, taking pleasure in inflicting as much discomfort as possible! Ok, we all know our minds tend to exaggerate, but the fear is real and is a huge reason why people put off visiting the dentist until it is too late! One New York dentist is trying to alter all this stereotype, with social media at the forefront of his approach. By answering patients’ questions online and airing live streams of oral procedures, Dr. Daniel Rubinshtein is revealing the human behind the mask, while showing just how painless dentistry can be!
Meet “Dr. snapchat” Rubinshtein
Dr. Rubinshtein grew up in a dental family. His parents Drs. Alex and Marina Rubinshtein opened Bensonhurst Dental Care 25 years ago, and he decided to follow in their footsteps by specializing in cosmetic dentistry. After graduating from Yale University, where he also completed his general residency, Dr. Rubinshtein studied at New York University College of Dentistry, from which his parents also graduated, and earned his Doctorate in Dental Surgery. Not only is Dr. Rubinshtein an award-winning dentist, but he is also known for his charitable work, giving back to the local community through pro-bono procedures and working with dental companies to give supplies to those in need. Dr. Rubinshtein is now focused on changing the “old fashioned” dental stereotype by taking advantage of new technology in cosmetic and reconstructive oral surgery as well as his community engagement work on social media.
Behind Bensonhurst Dental
One of Bensonhurst Dental Care’s unique assets is its in-house lab, where technicians craft veneers, crowns, and other cosmetic and surgical pieces using a mixture of highly trained manual handy craft, and the latest in 3d printing technology. This cuts out the usual back and forth that happens between dentist, patient and remote lab, allowing for a more efficient, customized and high quality result, in a quicker time frame. Dr. Rubinshtein says going to the lab and seeing the technicians work is one of the best parts of his day.
“It’s so amazing to see,” he says. “There’s so much artwork and detail involved. We have multiple technicians working tirelessly by hand to ensure the perfect natural match, and if it’s not perfect, we go back and fix it. In cosmetic procedures like this, often times, the skill of the lab technicians can be just as crucial to patient satisfaction as the dentist themselves!”
In terms of technology, Bensonhurst uses a state-of-the-art 3D scanner to provide hyper-detailed 3D impressions of a patient’s mouth, which are then manipulated on the computer and brought to life on a 3D printer to give the handcraft technicians a 100% accurate platform on which to finalize the veneers and crowns.
“With all these different technologies, you get where you want to be in a very short period of time and very efficiently,” he says. “When you do anything with scanning, it’s as precise as it gets,” Dr. Rubinshtein says. “But cosmetic surgery is only the end point of a sometimes multi-step process. We have an array of services in our practice, from hygienists and periodontists to surgeons and TMJ specialist that help with specialist bone and joint consultation. Whatever it takes to provide a healthy smile, we want to be able to provide under one roof.”
Dr. Rubinshtein is further busting the stereotype of old-school dentists by showing off these new forms of technology and methods through social media, especially through his personal Snapchat account. Known as “Dr. Snapchat” in the industry, he uses the platform to answer patient questions, and to take pictures and video of procedures and lab work, which he says helps calm patients’ inherit fear of the dentist. “By doing Snapchat and social media, people are not as scared. They see a fellow patient sat in the chair, totally relaxed while having the same procedure they are about to have and they see it is not so bad after all.” he says. “If you use these platforms correctly, I think they have huge potential to calm patients before visits.”
Lowering patients’ anxiety surrounding the dentist office is one of Dr. Rubinshtien’s priorities as a dentist. But it doesn’t stop with social media. He also utilizes many relaxing techniques to alter the patients’ perceptions of the office and examination rooms, including using noise cancelling headphones to play music, Netflix in the operating room and even experimenting with virtual reality goggles to help people relax and zone out from the noises around them. “Patients always remember sounds, smells, and sights— so to really change their perceptions, we need to alter all three,” he says.
Dr Rubinshtien’s practice is currently undergoing a major revamp that will further enhance the visual, audible and smell senses throughout the practice, and he also has plans to translate this concept dental studio to a Manhattan site within the next few years.
Dr. Rubinshtein & quip
Breaking stereotypes surrounding oral care by using an honest, open and revealing approach on public platforms such as Instagram is something we strive to do even half as well as Dr. R! Once you see through the fun, lighthearted and relaxed nature of these interactions, you can start to understand just what a fundamental effect this new level of engagement can have on the relationship between patients and dentists (or dental brands!). Coupling this mindset change with the automation that quip offers is something Dr. R sees as a powerful tool.
“Automatically replacing your toothbrush every three months is simple, but powerful,” said Dr. Rubinshtein. “No one wants to use an old brush head. Not only are they gross, but they become useless at cleaning. But with most people only hearing from their dentist once every couple of years, it is that regular 3-monthly touch point that quip can provide dentists that can become a really powerful tool, helping improve the bond between patient and professional, and provide patients with the ongoing, customized support they need.”