Listen and learn: Five of the best dental podcasts

22 July 2020

Australians have certainly developed a strong appetite for podcasts. In 2019, Roy Morgan reported that more than 1.6 million Australians download audio or video podcasts in an average four weeks, up from one million just four years earlier. With more of us tuning in now than ever before, these figures are on the rise – and so too are the numbers of podcasts available to satisfy our cravings. If you can think of a topic, you can bet there’s a podcast out there to match.

But not every podcast is created equal. Do a quick search for ‘dentistry’ and you’ll likely come up with several pages of results. Not all are worth your time, so we’ve collected the cream of the crop here. If you’ve never sampled the world of podcasts for professional development, then get ready for a binge session.

(1) The Savvy Dentist
Dr Jesse Green is a dentist and business coach from Canberra. These days it’s tough to find a reputable business coach who hasn’t at least considered putting out a podcast, and indeed, his podcast, The Savvy Dentist, promises to bring you the very best in business leadership and dental practice. Throughout his podcast, he interviews successful dentists, entrepreneurs and athletes, and he instructs you to “listen in as guests share their stories, ideas and business techniques that you can take back to your practice to have more patients, more profit and less stress.” That sounds good to us.

There are hundreds of episodes, so you won’t run out any time soon. Recent titles include "Re-imagining business in a post-COVID world", which features Australian small-business author Andrew Griffith, and "Lessons from dentistry’s most successful entrepreneur", which is an interview with dentist and founder of Southern Cross Dental Laboratories, David Penn.

Best of all, these podcast episodes are all free and there’s no obligation to book a session.

(2) Risk Bites
Hosted by Dr Mike Rutherford and Dr Annalene Weston, both dento-legal advisors based in Brisbane, this podcast is a must-listen for the careful and risk-averse practitioner. Risk Bites promises to provide short, bite-sized guidance regarding current dento-legal risks and issues affecting dental practitioners across Australia, and it delivers. It covers what to do if you receive a complaint, when and how to use written consent forms, how to respond to a solicitor’s letter and many more topics that could one day save you a lot of heartache. So far there are only six episodes, none more than 12 minutes in duration, so this one shouldn’t take you too long to listen through.

(3) The Dental Head Start
If you’re a student or an early-career practitioner then don’t scroll past this little gem of a podcast, because The Dental Head Start is aimed squarely at you. Each episode brings you interviews with experienced dentists to "get the story behind the struggles, the successes and the advice you want to hear". The format is a little different from the average podcast, with long episodes (averaging an hour and a half) interspersed with short 10-15 minute tips titled "What I Wish I Knew". Each episode and tip has a link to a page with additional info including a bio of the guest and the key topics discussed.

It even includes handy timecodes for each main point covered, so you can skip straight to the part you’re interested in. Be warned: there is a huge range of content to wade through, so set aside some time and wear comfy headphones.

(4) The 8E8 Show
The 8E8 (pronounced eighty-eight) claims to be “the internet’s only dental show talking about what matters most in marketing”, and it’s the only off-shore podcast to make our list. Joshua Scott is a marketing speaker and consultant in the United States who specialises in the dental industry. If you like your podcasts with a slick host, an American accent and a video version shot in a studio, this will be your jam. 

Though it’s obviously not specific to the Australian industry, you’ll find plenty of universally applicable marking tips, including "How to market after COVID-19" and "How to tell a story through your marketing". Quite a few episodes feature an interview with successful dentists or other experts. With well over 100 episodes averaging 30 minutes, this one is perfect for your regular commute.

(5) Australian Dental Association – Dental Files
Naturally we couldn’t make a list of great dentistry podcasts without including our very own Dental Files. We might be a tiny bit biased, but we think Dental Files has the most diverse range of topics of any other podcast in our list. This series delves into everything from ethics and emergency dental in Africa to digital dentistry. There’s even an episode dedicated to protecting your business from malware and ransomware (spoiler alert: don’t pay the ransom). Each episode includes an expert guest who shares their unique knowledge on a topic. You’ll need to set aside about an hour or so for each episode, but we think it’ll be well worth your time.

This article was first published in the ADA News Bulletin, July 2020 issue. For more from this issue and earlier editions, go to News Bulletin Online.