The Dental Mediator:  Seminars

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Neutralize Your Nightmares:  Promote Office Harmony through Structured Conflict Management

Speaker:  Kim Harms D.D.S.​

Extended Seminar/Workshop:  Hillary Becchetti Esq

Office Turmoil go you down?

Without a formal resolution method, conflict can cause team members and patients to chose their own solutions by changing jobs or dentists.  At the same time the dentist/patient relationship is being threatened by outside sources.  Negative media sources and self-proclaimed internet gurus are increasing while government and insurance interference is also on the rise.   

Improve communication skills and learn how to effectively manage disagreements with patients and team members.  Develop a process for improving the management of clinical and administrative errors through a focus on verbal skill development.  Learn how to accept appropriate responsibility, address concerns with empathy and provide resolution acceptable to both parties.  

Explore the principles of civil mediation which are designed to help those in conflict resolve their differences through the use of a neutral party.  

Conflict is universal.  Dr. Harms will share stories of successful conflict management from her work as a National Spokesperson for the American Dental Association and her connections to groups  in Rwanda, Tanzania, Mongolia, Georgia and Armenia.

Learning Objectives

*Build confidence in managing conflict using basic mediation techniques 

*Understand and implement the time tested methods of conflict resolution and trust building that work for those from Generation Z through Baby Boomers.

*Describe different personality types and their unique perspectives and reactions to stressful situations

Suggested Format:  All day, partial day, keynote

*Recognize the basic Pillars of Trust.  Learn how hard it is to earn trust and how easily trust can be destroyed.

*Master specific techniques and verbiage to minimize damage after a clinical or clerical error.

*Enhance listening skills to improve understanding and relationships

Suggested Audience:  All dental professionals

When the Pain is in the Brain: How to Encourage Patients and Team Struggling with Emotional Issues, Stress and Grief

Speaker:  Kim Harms D.D.S.

Mental Illness, Emotional Issues and Loss

Passive-aggressive Behavior and Workplace Bullying

The Elephant in the Room

Anxiety is rampant in today's society.  Stress levels are up.  As life expectancies rise so do grief expectancies.  Whether it be the patient or team member that is struggling, many dental practitioners are unaware how to handle the situation and help.  

Dr. Harms will use her experience in grief counseling and mediation to help participants recognize others' emotional needs and understand the physical and psychological effects of grief and the tasks of mourning.  Explore the effects of loss pain and suffering as well as the power of resilience, humor and joy.  Optimal care requires optimal understanding.  Increase your understanding of the emotional needs of  patients, team members, families, even ourselves and promote greater harmony in your personal and professional life.

See What People Are Saying

Learning Objectives

*Identify the connection between emotional pain and dentistry

*Understand how to effectively manage office bullying and passive-aggressive behavior and also how to minimize the damage

*Describe the difference between mourning and grief.

Suggested Format:  All Day, Partial Day, Keynote

*Differentiate the specific features of the four tasks of mourning.

*Define the various emotional illnesses which may effect our patients and team and understand how to adjust treatment or manage behavior

*Recognize the dental repercussions of emotional illness stress and grief.

Suggested Audience:  All dental professionals

From Calamity to Catastrophe: 

Emotional Emergencies in the Dental Office

Death, divorce, job loss, hurricanes,  flooding, political unrest, health issues, addictions, and economic downturns are part of life.  Any of these catastrophes can have an effect on the dentist, dental team and patients.  Those affected by loss are left in shock and grief, left wondering how they can cope with the world in general, and more specifically, in their personal and professional lives.  Unfortunately, in dentistry, our professional lives are very public, and expressions of grief do not work easily into a relationship where drilling is involved. Our patients expect their dentists to smile and focus on the task at hand with no distractions.  In the dental office, grief for any loss, is frequently expressed in secret.

Unfortunately suppressing emotional pain is not a healthy option. Repressed grief can cause depression, sleeplessness, alcohol, and substance abuse as well as cardiovascular disease. Grappling with grief and managing its side effects are skills dentists need to understand. Although we can’t control the bad things happening to us we can control how hard we work to recover. In this one hour keynote, Dr. Harms will tell of her numerous experiences in loss, grief counseling and mediation to help participants become aware of life’s challenges and prevent or minimize their consequences. She will also describe the proven methods of grief and stress management that assisted her in her own journey to joy after the catastrophic loss of her son to suicide.

Learning Objectives

*Understand how grief and depression affect dentists and the numerous circumstances that constitute a major loss.

*Develop an Emotional Emergency Plan to help your team cope with future inevitable losses within the team and with patients.

* Discover the power of forgiveness from personal stories of Genocide survivors in Rwanda, Armenia, and Eastern Europe.

* Examine the unique nature of a professional life in dentistry and the stigma and secrecy we encounter when it comes to grief and depression.

* Expand your resilience potential and know that no matter what happens in your life peace, joy and happiness are still possible.

The Pain Wars: Acute vs Chronic: Confessions of a Pain Rehab Graduate

Speaker:  Kim Harms D.D.S.

Dental Professionals encounter pain on a daily basis.  We are trained to successfully manage acute pain, but frequently patients suffering chronic pain which affects their dental treatment seek our help as well.  This seminar is designed to help practitioners understand the difference between acute and chronic pain and learn how to effectively manage both.

Dr Harms has a unique perspective on this issue.  She is not only a dentist familiar with treating patients in pain but also a patient who has suffered neck and back injuries resulting in nerve damage to her drilling fingers.  She is a graduate of The Mayo Clinic's Pain Rehab Program.

Participants in this course will learn the causes, costs and effective treatments for pain.  The side effects of pain such as depression, anxiety and stress as well as complimentary and alternative medical options will also be explored.  With the ever-increasing focus on the use of opioids in the dental practice, and the current epidemic of opioid abuse (in many cases precipitated by chronic pain) this information is essential for every staff member to understand.

Learning Objectives

*Describe the difference between active and chronic pain.

*Discuss the numerous costs (financial physical and emotional) of chronic pain.

*Understand the latest recommendations for the treatment of acute pain.

Suggested Format:  Partial day, keynote


*Review the numerous long and short term treatments for chronic pain

*Explore the various causes and effects of opioid abuse and its long term consequences.

Suggested Audience:  All dental professionals

To Floss or not to Floss: That is the Question

Speaker:  Kim Harms D.D.S.

Help your patients critically evaluate internet sources and become your patients' most trusted source of oral health information

In an era of easy website development and internet access anyone can claim to be an expert in dentistry.  Sometimes even traditional media sources can be confusing to our patients.  How do we encourage our patients trust their local dental professional as their number one oral health information source?

Dr Harms will share her experiences as a spokesperson for the American Dental Association on topics such as microbial biofilm affecting our water, the AIDS epidemic, fluoride, amalgam, oil pulling, charcoal pulling and fecal bacteria on our toothbrushes.

This seminar is designed to help dental professionals with the verbal skills necessary to guide their patients in the process of critically analyzing information they receive from media outlets.  The ultimate goal is for participants to become their patient's most trusted source of oral health information.

Learning Objectives

*Describe the 6 ways to create a fan base

*Review the most frequently searched online dental topics and the credentials of those providing online information

*Develop a customized information handout to help patients discern the credentials of online "experts".

Suggested format:  Partial day, keynote

*Delineate the I'm portent steps necessary to manage or avert a public relations crisis originating on the internet.

*Become your patients first and most trusted source of dental information by expanding your verbal skills when discussing controversial dental health issues and developing an officewide

patient education system for them to turn to. 

Suggested Audience:  All dental professionals