If you want to strike fear in the hearts of ECPs, mention MULTIPLE PAIR SALES! The look is that of a deer in headlights, you have to remind them to breathe. Why do we fear multiple pair sales? Because we are sure that we will be perceived as greedy, money-grubbing SALESPEOPLE! Not kind, benevolent eye health care providers (ODs) or saintly purveyors of sight-fixing optical accessories (opticians).

This is where an understanding of our duplicitous brain is helpful. You see, it is our OLD brain, our survival brain that reacts to fear or perceived threat through a fight or flight response, and in the case of multiple pair selling, instructs us to flee from an uncomfortable conversation with the patient. After all, it’s hard enough to ask for the amount due on their first and likely their only pair of glasses (even after their managed-care allowance is deducted).

What if we use our NEW brain to override OLD brain? NEW brain is our evolved brain, it’s used for language processing, logic, reason, comprehension and planning. We derive our social skills and values, and much of our personality from this part of our brain. For the sake of the patient, park OLD brain because the way to present multiple pairs requires logic, reason and effective communication.

Logically, why do we need more than one of anything? Because we participate in numerous activities and occasions in varied environments and social settings. Let’s put it in perspective. Imagine that you own only one pair of shoes. They’re flip-flops. You wear them to the gym. Can you get by walking on the treadmill? Yes. But are they comfortable? No. Are they good for your balance, bones, muscles, tendons and ligaments? No. Next, you want to join the Pilates class… OK, you see where I’m going with this.

We perform a disservice to patients when we don’t provide them with optimal vision solutions for all of their various daily vision challenges. Our NEW brain knows this and will use reason to communicate the benefits of more than one pair of general purpose eyewear, i.e., heavy computer users benefit from computer lenses, those who experience uncomfortable blinding glare outdoors and when driving benefit from polarized sunglasses, or children can benefit from sport safety glasses. Remember—talk about the benefits and how these other pairs of glasses will improve their life.

Deborah Kotob
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