Dr. Dennis Hartlieb

Navigating Social Media as Dentists

How does social media impact dentists and our practices?

In this Solo Bonding Sharecast episode, our host Dr. Dennis Hartlieb talks with Dr. Alan Mead about how to navigate social media as dentists.

As Dennis and Alan discuss, social media can have a profound impact on dentists today, and while it's wonderful to learn from others through social media and to share your work, it can also be a negative experience at times. Dennis and Alan discuss the pros and cons of social media and share tips about what has worked for them when managing social media consumption and interaction.

Episode Highlights


Episode Overview

Check out the topics by timestamp, or watch or listen to the whole episode. (See above, or watch on YouTube or listen wherever you find your podcasts.)


Thoughts on Instagram dentistry and how it affects ourselves and our colleagues.

Social media and social media dentistry.

Most of us are aspirational dentists.
Wanting to start anonymous instagram channel of horrifying dental photos.
The implicit suggestion of social media dentistry.

Be happy with the skills that you have.

Michael Jordan was the best in his era, if not the best ever.

How social media has changed the dental landscape.

How social media dentistry has changed the way dentists look at procedures.
The pros and cons of using a rubber dam in the office vs in the practice.

Social media is the classic example of judging your insides by everyone else’s outside. 18:01

Being the best dentist in the world.
Being 1% better every day.
Social media is the classic example of judging by others.
Everyone puts their best face forward.

How social media can hurt your confidence. 21:35

Showing failures in a presentation vs social media.
Why social media can be harmful.
Being in the mood when going on Instagram.
Being conscious of social media.

How social media can affect your mental health. 25:29

Mental health in dentistry is getting beaten down on a daily basis.
Being aware of social media.
How social media is different than 20 years ago.
Why podcasting is different from social media and how it's similar.

Celebrate what you can do. 32:01

Celebrating the success of others on social media.
How social media can affect younger and older dentists.

"Remember that social media is the classic example of you judging your insides by everyone else's outsides. They're showing their good stuff.

"If you compare your regular to the stuff they're putting out there, it's never going to turn out well for you."

~Dr. Alan Mead

The Downside of Dentistry on Social Media

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As Dr. Mead shares, one downside of social media presentations of dentistry cases can be the negative effect those presentations have on dentists watching them.

"And I think we have to excuse ourselves for not being able to deliver at the level that we're seeing. I think let's celebrate it. I'm going to take everything at face value, and I'm going to believe that it's actual unless I am shown otherwise. I've got to believe it; some of this dental work is just so well executed.

"But that doesn't mean that I'm not serving my patients at a high level. It doesn't mean that I should hang up my dental drill and walk away from the game just because Michael Jordan is on the court."

~Dr. Dennis Hartlieb

Doing Our Personal Best as Dentists

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As Dennis shares in this clip, by focusing on doing our personal best as dentists, we can avoid some of the pitfalls of comparison that can come our way with social media.

"I think what we need to do is make sure that we're building ourselves up. For some dentists, if going on Instagram or going on your social media platform gives you fuel and makes you feel good, that's awesome.

"For me, it can have the opposite effect, so I just have to watch it."

~Dr. Dennis Hartlieb

Navigating Social Media in a Positive Way

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As Dr. Hartlieb shares, being in a healthy mental space before exploring social media posts is a crucial way to reap the benefits of seeing other dentists' work without becoming too self-critical.

Dennis Hartlieb, DDS, AAACD

DOT Founder

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