Watching dentists talk with patients about treatment there are a number of mistakes that I see made over and over again.
Mistake #5 — Jargon
Have you ever been in a group of people where they started talking in a language you didn't understand? Not very nice was it? It made you feel alienated, didn't it?
That's what it's like when we use dental jargon in front of a patient. Words that are simple to us like “pulp”, “tissues” and “caries” may have no meaning to a patient or even an entirely different meaning.
To a patient, “tissues” come in a box.
They know that you're talking about them but they cannot understand what you mean — and they don't want to appear stupid — so they just shut down and with withdraw.
An ophthalmologist told me a while ago that I have “presbyopia”. Not wanting to appear stupid I nodded and said “I suspected as much!” Why couldn't he have used a simple term I would understand (long-sighted)?
So, rule #5 is: Speak in plain English. Never use any sort of technical jargon.