Transforming Your Dental Practice: Why You Should Consider Dental Sleep Medicine

January 13, 2022

The dental industry is in a period of rapid growth. In 2020, dentistry was valued at $15.57 billion. By 2027, it’s expected to nearly double, reaching an estimated $30.59 billion. Not only does this mean that there is enormous potential for growth for independent practices, but it also reflects the increasing demand for dental services in general. Because the aging population in the US is growing at an unprecedented rate, dentists will need to provide care to more people than ever before. Similarly, more patients will return for their biannual appointments as the pandemic continues to subside.

Additionally, dentists will need to provide the best care possible to stay relevant in the competitive landscape. Patients are coming to their dental visits with higher expectations. Besides excellent dental care, they expect a great experience both in and out of the office. They also trust that their dentists will be able to provide excellent services, including the latest dental technologies. The truth is that your patients’ well-being is in your hands, and you can do even more than improve their oral health. You could also help them get better sleep every night and lead happier and healthier lives.

Integrating sleep medicine at your dental office is the answer to expanding your practice, driving greater revenue, and improving your patient care. Let’s dive into exactly why you should begin screening and treating your patients for OSA.

Improve Your Patients’ Lives

Millions of Americans are expected to have obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), and it is dramatically impacting their health. Not only does the disorder often lead to excessive sleepiness and impaired daily functioning, but it is also associated with a variety of chronic health concerns, including the following:

  • Heart disease
  • Dementia
  • Diabetes
  • Anxiety
  • Obesity
  • Depression
  • Stroke
  • Cancer

When these individuals aren’t able to sleep well every night, it can impact nearly every area of their health and wellness, from their mental and physical health to their relationships and career success.

Additionally, the majority of people with OSA don’t even know they have it. An estimated 80 percent of sleep apnea sufferers remain undiagnosed and untreated. This means that they’re not only suffering from a serious disorder, but they are also experiencing symptoms blindly.

The good news is that they don’t need to continue suffering silently. As a dentist, you are in the best position to help your patients gain access to the screening and treatment they need to lead healthier lives and find the root answer to many of their problems. Dental sleep medicine will give you the tools you need to give your patients the best care possible—all during a biannual visit and an in-home sleep test.

Acquire and Retain Patients and Increase Revenue

On top of helping patients everywhere find a solution to their symptoms, dental sleep medicine can also benefit your practice. One of the most powerful results it could offer you and your team is increased revenue. This is due to the fact that providing unique sleep services will help you both acquire and retain patients. According to research by Frederick Reichheld, increasing retention rates by just five percent can boost profit by up to 85 percent. Along those lines, offering new services is bound to help you bring in more patients.

As patients learn more about sleep apnea and the demand for screening and treatment surges, your practice will be ready and capable of taking them on. Similarly, your current patients will be able to see just how much you care about them through the new services you provide, helping you retain them. Patient retention is one of the greatest indicators of success at your dental practice. Sure, some attrition is unavoidable, but there are ways to retain customers for longer periods of time, like ensuring they have an excellent experience and get the care they need.

Provide Staff with a Sense of Purpose

Dental sleep medicine is also the key to providing a better experience for your staff. With the increased revenue and opportunities you will have, it will be easier to offer them greater benefits, salaries, and most of all, a sense of purpose. Similar to patient retention, employee retention is an excellent way to save money and reduce costs. In fact, it’s estimated that entry-level employees cost at least half of their salary to replace.

Although it can be challenging to predict what will cause your employees to jump ship, genuinely caring about their growth and satisfaction while working at your practice is essential to retaining them. For example, one study found that 94 percent of employees reported that they would stay longer at a company if the company is invested in helping them learn. By integrating sleep medicine at your practice, you can support your employees’ personal growth and education as well as give them a chance to pick up new skills. As they learn to provide screening and education to patients, they will also find new ways to engage with their work beyond providing oral care, something that can be very exciting, especially for staff members looking for opportunities to evolve in their careers.

If you’re looking to improve the care at your dental practice and offer invaluable new services, dental sleep medicine could be exactly what you need. Expanding the service options at your dental office to provide OSA screening and treatment can offer priceless benefits for your patients, practice, and staff. It can also provide you with essential opportunities to increase revenue and continue growing professionally. Don’t let this opportunity for growth pass you by! For more information about dental sleep medicine, how it can transform your practice and offer more opportunities than ever before, and how to gain additional support, visit