Here in Colorado, I am so blessed to be part of an amazing group of competitors, yes – independent dental hygiene competition right here in Colorado. We are a tight-knit group who actually help each other!

So often, when you hear of  business competitors, it’s….well…..competitive!

Some think of the “battle of the electronics” as in an Apple v. Microsoft race.  Others think of Pepsi v. Coca-Cola.

Those of us who are Private Practice Dental Hygienists in Colorado are a shining example of coopetition.

Dental Hygienists have generally been supportive of each other.  However, a couple years ago, it was taken to a higher level.

It all started with an invitation to lunch by my colleague  Angie Rhodes at Smile Logic in Broomfield.  She started locating the Private Practice Hygienists along the Front Range and invited us all to lunch. Since that first meeting, which had over 20 dental hygienists in attendance, we’ve continued to meet quarterly or so.  The numbers vary, depending on availability, but it’s always well-attended.  I salute her for getting the momentum started.

Whenever we meet, we actually help each other.  We ask questions of each other to receive help with our challenges.  The encouragement from someone who really understands is so helpful!  Everyone benefits.   And we’re available to each other by phone, text, or email.

We’ve been focusing more and more on simply getting the word out!  Very few people in Colorado are even aware that they have the option of seeing an independent Dental Hygienist to have their teeth cleaned.  This has been an option for consumers since 1986!

There are several reasons a person may want to visit a Private Practice Dental Hygienist.  We usually are more economical than a traditional dental office, especially for people without insurance.  We usually have more relaxed atmospheres and clients don’t hear any drilling from down the hall.  Some people have dual homes and want their teeth cleaned while they’re here and they see their dentist while they’re “back home.”  Many are afraid or intimidated by the traditional dental office, and some have trust issues.  Others have been without dental care for so long, they don’t know where to start – but they know they need their teeth cleaned.

So as we work together to get the word out, we created a website – www.myteethcleaned.com.  There you will find a directory of Private Practice Dental Hygienists in Colorado.  Or at least the ones we’ve found so far who want to be listed in the directory.

It’s a very handy online directory.  I recently received a call from someone who Googled “Dental Hygienist in Colorado” (because they just wanted their teeth cleaned) and happened upon my website.  The caller really wanted an appointment with me – but was it really worth the drive from the Denver area?  I referred them to our directory website where they were served by one of my colleagues who practices much closer to them.

In our own private practices, we each focus on the things we’re passionate about.  My passion is nutrition and herbal products.   Another loves working with seniors, another with Medicaid patients.  Still another is passionate about the convenience of providing services for people in the nearby businesses, and another is set up for mobile dental hygiene.  It’s wonderful to have such a great network, and to know that we can help people find excellent care from a practitioner in their geographic area or their area on interest.  From the Mountains to the Plains, we’ve got someone to recommend.

So the next time you hear “kill the competition” or you hear of some “product wars,” I hope you remember there’s a better way: Coopetition – everyone wins!