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Public Reprimand

My doctor is a perfectionist and that is great in my eyes, I get 50 min a cleaning, responsible for completing X-rays, full perio charting, prophy, and OHI. My Dr recently took over a practice of an older Dr that has never done much with perio, the area we live in lacks home care education, most pts when ask are not brushing at all let alone flossing etc. the Dr insists I use disclosing solution from to prophy on all pts for education. Recently after the cleaning he comes in for the exam and discloses my patient after I have done the prophy to check my work. If he finds the smallest amount of plaque he brings it up in front of the patient. “Did u not subgingivally polish?!” Makes me look in the patients mouth and makes me touch of my patient. Explains to the patient I missed plaque. I used the cavitron subgingivally then scale subgingivally and polish subgingivally. Floss and rinse thoroughly… help, is this appropriate? He often makes me feel defeated and makes me cry.



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1 Answer

I’m all for striving for perfection however, no one is 100% perfect. I personally don’t feel the doctor putting your work down in front of patients is appropriate at all. Maybe he feels doing this makes him look superior, but to the patients, it can come across as him not trusting his staff and that patients are receiving inferior treatment. This actually hurts an office more than it helps. Further, an employer should have your back and trust your treatment. If they make you feel defeated to the point of crying, this may not be the office for you.
 
Constructive criticism can be good, but this doesn’t sound like constructive criticism. I feel the more appropriate way for him to handle this is to simply pick up a scaler himself, remove what he thinks you “missed,” and talk privately with you about it later.
 
Have you had a conversation with him about this situation? This might be a good next step. Perhaps he doesn’t realize what he’s doing (I’m trying to give him the benefit of the doubt here). If you have, or this doesn’t change the situation, you need to do what’s best for you and move on. This is not a healthy situation to be in, especially when it’s affecting you emotionally.
 
I’m so sorry you are dealing with this, keep your chin up!

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