Do you find yourself juggling too many dental appointments and procedures in certain months? You may be experiencing the seasonality of dentistry. Many practices report increased demand at certain points throughout the year, while other periods are relatively slower. Exploring why this happens can help you to plan ahead for busier times so that your dental office is able to meet patient demands when they increase rapidly. In this blog post, we’ll discuss what causes seasonal fluctuations in dentistry – as well as touch upon strategies for you to maximize revenue during these busy months.
The Busiest Months for Dental Appointments and Hiring
Dental industry seasonality has a disparity between the busiest months for dental appointments and those for hiring dental hygienists and assistants. Generally, the summer months into early autumn are the busiest for appointments, with peak bookings often being recorded during June, July, and August because these are school holidays.
Conversely, periods of higher hiring tend to be more frequent during the springtime; as families make vacation plans, it leaves space for new professionals to join established practices. January to March is the prime time for hiring new dental hygienists and dental assistants, which shows its peak in May, just before the summer break starts in schools. Dental offices increase employee readiness for the cusp of busy seasons. Dental leaders require larger teams to manage patient appointment demands during peak periods and optimize efficiency during slow winter months of ease. In some cases, hiring will also spike over the winter as demand increases due to long holiday breaks.
Additionally, warmer weather months tend to lead to an uptick of about 25% in emergency or general hygiene visits due to people engaging in outdoor activities, often resulting in greater levels of cavities in those not focusing on their oral health. It’s clear that seasonality in many aspects of dentistry must be taken into consideration when strategizing in this sector.
Winter is normally the slowest season for most dental practices. Local businesses in the same area often play a strong role in seasonal trends, so understanding your client base can be beneficial when predicting appointment scheduling. Recognizing these fluctuations can help with creating an effective long-term care and management strategy that fits patient needs based on their seasonality and lifestyle habits.
Another common period of high patient activity is around the turn of the year. According to a New Dentist Now blog by ADA, this is due to the insurance benefits of many individuals who want to make use of their insurance benefits before they expire. This is also why it is important to encourage patients to use their insurance benefits prior to the end of the year if possible.
Lastly, there can be some regional variations in patient visits due to holidays specific to certain areas or regions. For example, dentist offices located near universities will experience a decrease in patient visits during students’ summer break since they are away from campus and unable or unwilling to come into the office for routine visits or emergency care.
Now, what is the slowest month in dentistry? It’s December! The holidays introduce more than just festive cheer – for many, it’s a time when dental services can experience slight seasonal variations as individuals rush to take advantage of their insurance benefits. Busyness among patients and an uptick in vacation activities may reduce demand during December, yet appointments still roll steadily on due to the desire to use remaining coverage before year-end.
Seasonality in the Types of Dental Treatments
While dental care is a priority year-round, the busiest months for dentists tend to shift with the seasons and with patient preferences each month.
- Since professional cleanings and other preventative measures can help keep teeth healthy, January is one of the busiest months for dentists, as many people start the year motivated to improve their oral health.
- During the period April through May, patients often seek treatment for badly cracked or chipped teeth before summer vacation.
- August also tends to be busy, as some opt for orthodontic procedures that require several visits before school begins.
- In December, dentists typically see many adults and children in need of tooth fillings, cavities, and more complex treatments.
How to Prepare for the Busy Seasons Ahead
Busy months for dentists don’t necessarily align with the traditional seasons; November is typically when things get hectic in the field, with many appointments set for restorative and cosmetic treatments after the summer months. In preparation for these busy times, it helps to streamline upcoming appointments so that there’s less stress on operational tasks, such as paperwork and patient check-ins.
Furthermore, maintaining a well-stocked inventory of supplies and materials can help minimize delays associated with ordering items on short notice. By taking stock of seasonal trends in dentistry and managing operations accordingly, dental offices can gain an edge as they prepare for their busiest times throughout the year.
As for dental hygienists and assistants, May and July are two of the busiest months for dental hiring, just before the busy season starts. These months tend to be fruitful in terms of searching for and onboarding qualified hygienists and dental assistants who possess the expertise needed for the job at hand. Temping agencies who specialize in dental hiring often recommend dental professionals to apply during these times, as there is a tendency for practices to advertise their roles widely throughout May and July – providing a multitude of potential opportunities for those looking to begin their career in dentistry.
By being prepared for the busy seasons ahead, you can ensure that your practice runs smoothly, no matter what time of year it is. And when you need a little help to get through those busier times, TempStars is here for you. We’re the leading dental staffing agency in North America, and we’re ready to help you find the best temporary dental professionals to keep your practice running like clockwork. So why not give us a try today? You might just be surprised at how easy it is to find your dream job!