When you ask people what their least favorite subject was in school, how often do you hear people say, “English”? Whether it is because of diagramming sentences, reading Shakespearean plays, or writing essays on Tolstoy, some people cringe at just the thought of their English courses.
And while we know that English grammar can be an important subject, sometimes we forget why exactly that is.
In the medical field, excellent communication is key. Not only does it help your practice run smoothly, it lets you establish a professional, knowledgeable tone when you correspond with peers, coworkers, and most importantly, patients.
So, take out a pencil, crack open your notebook, and follow along as we take a quick look at some tricky grammatical missteps that are easy to make!
Between is typically used with two individuals or objects. Among refers to more than two individuals or objects.
“Just between the two of us,” one dentist said to another, “I’m not comfortable being among all these angry patients of yours.”
Anxious and eager both mean “eager for.” What sets them apart is that anxious also has a sense of concern or fear.
Lisa felt anxious about her upcoming root canal, but she was eager to get it over with.
Complementary involves “completing” or “adding to” something. Complimentary means that something is “free” or “praising.”
The tooth whitening and complementary cleaning completed Mrs. Jackson’s dental checklist, and Dr. Davis made her day when he offered her a complimentary checkup for the next time.
Setting involves a person plus something else, like an object, that is placed somewhere. Sitting only involves a person (or people), and means “being seated or in a position of rest.”
The dental assistant set the mirror on the tray, then went to go sit down for her lunch break.
This one is a bit trickier.
Due to introduces an adjective phrase (a group of words that modify a noun, like a person, place, or thing), and it is usually used after a form of the verb to be. Because of and On account of both introduce an adverb phrase (a group of words that modify verbs).
Mrs. Lindel’s cavity was due to her inconsistent brushing. (Due to modifies the noun cavity.)
Dr. Smith established a scholarship program because of the help he himself received. (Because of modifies the verb established.)
Both refers to “two things considered together,” while each refers to items or people in a group individually.
Both patients arrived at the same time, and each of them wanted the other to go first.
Each other should be used when you are referring to only two persons or things. One another refers to more than two.
Dr. Lindsay and Dr. Miller gave each other gifts over the holidays. Dr. Miller’s entire staff traded gifts among one another.
Start looking for this one and you’ll find it all over the place.
Comprise means “to consist of or contain.” Compose means “to make up.”
Dr. Smith’s practice comprises Dr. Smith, his assistant, and his staff. (Never use “is comprised of”!)
Dr. Smith, his assistant, and his staff compose Dr. Smith’s practice.
To ensure something means “to make sure, or make certain.” Insuring means “protecting against something.” And to assure means “to give confidence about something.”
Imply means “to suggest,” while infer means “to assume or to come to a conclusion about something.”
Mrs. Sanders implied that she did not have insurance to help cover her root canal. From Dr. Lindsay’s response, Mrs. Sanders inferred that they would work something out.
What are some grammar rules that trip you up? Do you know of any grammar rules that are especially tricky? Be sure to let us know in the comments section! Thanks for visiting us at Engage Dental.
When you think about what makes you most comfortable in a dentist’s office, what comes to mind? Is it a friendly staff? A cozy waiting area? A dentist with a sense of humor? What if you narrowed things down even further? Even if it did not come immediately to mind, color plays a big part in how you react to a dentist’s office. In fact, color can say a lot more about a room than you might think.
Humans react very strongly to colors. They help affect our mood, our perceptions of objects, and more.
Whether you happen to be a dental professional looking to redecorate a practice or just a patient interested in knowing more about how color can affect a space, here are some ways of thinking about the right color palette for a dental office.
What can colors say about a dental practice? Well, for starters, colors carry a lot of emotion. We read colors in much the same way as we might read books, magazines, or newspapers.
Colors like blues and greens tend to be cooler and more calming. We associate those colors with things like water, skies, and nature—things that tend to be peaceful. Compare those to bright reds and oranges, which stand out for a lot of people and can have powerful connotations. While red can inspire creativity and passion, for a lot of people it can also mean alarm or fire, something you may not want to put in a person’s head while he or she is waiting for a checkup!
Reds, pinks, and yellows can all be very catchy and draw someone’s attention. Does that mean that you absolutely have to stay away from these in your dental office? No, of course not. But, you should be aware of the feelings and emotions they inspire.
Do you remember what it is like waiting in a dentist’s office? What sorts of feelings and emotions do you have before your appointment?
When you think about the kinds of things your patients could be feeling, you can help prevent adding to the anxiety that some people have about visiting the dentist. Things like blues and greens in more subdued tones can be great ways of instilling a sense of calm in a patient.
If you want something like bright red for your practice, consider using it as an accent to balance out a contrasting color rather than going all-out.
Because there is no surefire way of figuring out how people will react to a specific color choice, how can you tell which colors are the right ones?
Ultimately, the best bet is to follow your gut. Trust your instincts.
Go with colors that you like, that put you at ease. When you look at a particular set of colors, what do you feel? Do they seem warm and inviting? Or do they make you nervous? If you feel the former, then you probably have a good pick. If you feel like the latter, then you may need to go back to browsing color swatches.
If you are still unsure, here are some tips to help you find the help you need.
If you cannot decide, try going to a local hardware or paint store. Ask questions about which colors tend to sell more and which ones are the most popular. The colors that sell well obviously make an impact with customers, and they might work well with your office, too!
Also, if you are working with a contractor, architect, or designer for your dental office, get their advice. Part of their expertise involves knowing which looks, styles, and colors will work best with your space. And, if you need more ideas, check out architectural digests and portfolios for dental offices and see if any ideas grab your eye.
Have you ever felt strongly about the choice of color in a dentist’s office? What were some of the worst offenders? How about the best? Share with us in the comments section below!