T-Bone Speaks Dentistry

T-Bone Speaks is a dental podcast dedicated to helping you achieve clinical, financial, and personal balance in dentistry. Dr. Tarun "T-Bone" Agarwal and his co-host Mr. Chuck McKee bring years of practical experience and a unique 'in the trenches' view of dentistry to the podcast. Thanks to their entertaining demeanor and down to earth approach, you’ll be looking forward to each episode. For more great resources on dental learning or to submit a question to the hosts please visit .
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T-Bone Speaks Dentistry



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Now displaying: 2018
Aug 28, 2018

In this podcast episode, I meet with a close friend of mine, Chuck McKee, to discuss something that dentists are reluctant to talk about – financial freedom.

Chuck has 20 years of dental experience and partners with dentists across the country to help them integrate technology and grow their practice. His business, Ask Chuck McKee, focuses on helping practices achieve a consistent and balanced overhead.

We discussed:

  • The three phases of financial freedom
  • How much money you should keep in your business checking account vs. your personal account
  • Why you should pay yourself the same amount you would pay an associate to work at your practice
  • How to measure overhead and fund your working capital account
  • Planning for the future and saving for retirement
  • Working on a time-frame that applies to you, your practice and your vision for the future

To find out more please head to

Aug 14, 2018

On this podcast episode, I speak with husband and wife power-duo, Dr. Kevin W. Fryer and Missy Fryer.

Kevin and Missy own their practice, “Kevin W. Fryer DDS INC” in Mayfield Heights, Ohio. Kevin graduated from The Ohio State University in 1989 while Missy graduated from Lake Erie College in 2001. Kevin initially started his private practice in Willoughby Hills in 1992. However, the practice outgrew its space, and so it was relocated to Mayfield Heights in 2014.

The couple married in 2012 and Missy currently works as the Business Manager at their family practice. She’s also a published author and spends a lot of her time at her writing desk crafting various dental office training manuals for her company, Buckeye Dental Productions.  

On the podcast we discussed:

  • A peek inside Missy’s book, “Dental Office Survival Guide: 2018 Front Desk Edition” and other published works
  • The process of writing a training manual for a dental team
  • Benefits of implementing a training strategy for new employees
  • How to recognize limitations in your team and when to know it’s time for a change
  • Knowing when it’s the right time to invest in technology
  • How technology can help grow your practice and increase your bottom line
  • Much more!

If you would like to find out more, or to watch a video recording of our discussion, click here

Aug 7, 2018

I’m thrilled to welcome my special guest, Dr. Heidi Kohltfarber, onto the show to talk all about dental radiology and what radiology can do for your dental practice.

Dr. Heidi Kohltfarber is a dental radiologist and associate professor in the Department of Radiologic Imaging at Loma Linda University School of Dentistry. She’s also an adjunct professor in the Department of Diagnostic Sciences at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dr. Kohltfarber is very passionate about 3D imaging with a particular focus on how it applies to oral health care.

In 2013, Heidi founded “Dental Radiology Diagnostics” where she currently resides and works as both the owner and managing oral and maxillofacial radiologist. In her spare time, Heidi enjoys spending time with her two daughters and husband Bobby, who is a civil engineer with Michael Baker International.

On the podcast we discussed:

  • What inspired Heidi to become a dental radiologist
  • The importance of collaborating with others to help them (and yourself) grow
  • What a dental radiologist is and their main job duties
  • Academics Vs. Private Practice radiology
  • How much radiation comes with 3D imaging
  • Ensuring your liability as a dentist using radiology and 3D imaging
  • Benefits of 3D imagery in dentistry
  • Working with a dental radiologist

For more information visit:

Jul 24, 2018

Join me on another highly anticipated episode of T-Bone Speaks. In this episode, I interview Dr. Leslie Holmes-Leach from Rocky Top Dentistry about working in a small-town dental practice and why you should value your dental hygienists.

Dr. Leslie Holmes-Leach is from Anderson County and has worked in the dental profession for 20 years. She graduated from the Medical University of South Carolina College of Dental Medicine and then completed a one-year residency at Advanced Education of General Dentistry Residency. There, she trained in placing dental implants, working on complex cases and learning how to attend special needs and anxious patients. In her spare time, she enjoys spending quality time with her family on the lake and volunteering with Remote Area Medical and her local Volunteer Ministry Center.

On the podcast we discussed:

  • Why dentists should value their hygienists
  • How to increase productivity in the dental hygiene department
  • The importance of developing trust and respect in the office
  • The pros and cons of working on commission
  • Deciding whether or not it’s time to bring on an office manager
  • What it takes to be a “leader” and how to develop leadership skills
  • Benefits of working in a small-town practice
  • Why work shouldn’t be at the top of your priority list

For more information or to watch this episode click here

Jul 17, 2018

Episode 18 of the T-Bone Speaks podcast is now LIVE! For this episode, I invited my good friend and CEREC expert, Dr. Dhaval Patel, back onto the show.

Dr. Dhaval Patel is a practicing dentist at Pleasant Grove Dental Group and Orthodontics in Roseville, California. He graduated from Maharashtra University of Health Sciences in India and had been practicing dentistry since 2005. He’s well known as the “CEREC Guru” and is the founder of the popular Facebook group, “Keep CERECing,” which is dedicated to helping dentists learn and grow as CEREC users. 

Dhaval takes a very personal approach towards dentistry and always works to build a good relationship with each of his patients. He focuses on removing the fear that many people experience when visiting the dentist and always strives to provide quality dental treatment with the utmost patient satisfaction.

On the podcast we discussed:

  • [03:35] Creating a clinical culture of excellence within a DSO environment and the benefits of working with one
  • [07:17] A typical day in the office as a practice owner partnered with a DSO
  • [09:47] Working with CEREC and Zirconia
  • [12:26] Aesthetics of a Zirconia Crown and how to improve it
  • [13:07] Dr. Dhaval Patel’s advice for young dentists
  • [21:00] Overcoming common challenges of owning a dental practice
  • [23:27] How to attract the right associate
  • [30:10] The importance of having a personal savings plan to achieve economic flexibility and freedom
  • [41:35] Setting expectations with your associates and how to hold them accountable

 For more information click here.


Jul 3, 2018

Join me on episode 17 of the podcast to listen to my discussion with Sandi Hudson from “Unlock the PPO” about how to negotiate with PPO insurance companies.

Sandi is the co-owner and founder of “Unlock the PPO,” which specializes in analyzing the relationship between dental practices and PPOs and helping them to implement a successful negotiation strategy. Sandi has spent over a decade in dental office management overseeing dental insurance participation and negotiations. She’s passionate about helping dentists manage insurance participation in a way that’s right for them and their practice.

On the podcast we discussed:

  • How to negotiate with PPO’s
  • Why you should negotiate with insurance companies every two years
  • Avoiding the common pitfalls that come with negotiating with PPO insurance companies
  • The advantages of hiring a professional to help your practice negotiate with PPO’s
  • What a shared network agreement is and what it means for your fee schedule
  • What to look for when you want to get into an insurance network
  • Determining a strategic plan for successful negotiation
  • The importance of getting “demographic specific” when searching for the right insurance company
  • How to reduce your reliance on insurance companies
  • How to transition out of insurance and everything you need to know about split participation

For more information on this podcast episode click here



Jun 26, 2018

I’m delighted to welcome Dr. David Stern from Jarrettsville Family Dental onto the show to discuss his interest in in-house payment plans and how it has impacted his practice.

Dr. David Stern obtained his DDS degree from the University of Maryland School of Dentistry and is a current member of the American Dental Association. He is a family orientated man and enjoys the “small town lifestyle” of Jarrettsville with his wife and two adorable little daughters. When it comes to his practice, he strives to develop long-term and meaningful relationships with his patients and ensuring that they can afford dental treatment, which is what fuels his interest surrounding in-office payment plans.

David reached out to me after listening to one of my previous podcasts where I talked about in-house payment plans, and I decided to invite him onto the show to hear more about what made him bring payment plans on board, what the outcomes have been and how it has changed his practice.

On the podcast we discussed:

  • How David came to learn about in-office payment plans
  • What an in-house payment plan is and why it’s necessary
  • Benefits of in-house payment plans for the practice AND the patient
  • Challenges of implementing payment plans and how to overcome them
  • What type of practice should and shouldn’t implement a payment plan
  • Why you should have a firm financial arrangement in place before treatment
  • How to track multiple types of AR within a practice and managing outstanding payments
  • Types of dentistry carried out in “rural practices”

For more information visit:

Jun 19, 2018

On this podcast episode, I speak with Dr. Shaun Mirabal about his aspirations to be a practice owner and how he is going to put his plan into action.

Dr. Shaun Mirabal graduated from the University of Oklahoma College of Dentistry in 2015 and worked as an associate dentist in DSO for two and a half years. He has since decided to open a dental practice with his wife and is committed to taking continued education courses to keep up with the latest advances in state-of-the-art technology and procedures in dentistry.

On the podcast we discussed:

  • Shaun’s journey from graduation to becoming a practice owner
  • Finding the right practice and what to look out for when you’re looking to buy a practice
  • The importance of finding the right type of dentistry for YOU
  • Why implants and digital dentistry is the future of the industry
  • Understanding the true value of technology is vital before investing
  • How to develop a “game plan” and why you need to re-evaluate it every 3 to 6 months
  • Why you should define your goals into specific targets and write them down!
  • Overcoming fears and challenges when buying a new practice

For more information click here.


Jun 12, 2018

On this podcast episode, I welcome Dr. Craig Lambourne from Granbury Dental Center to the show.

Dr. Lambourne graduated from the University of Southern California and obtained his DDS degree in 2015. He currently works as a dentist in Granbury Dental Care in Texas, which is a practice that focuses on a range of services including dental implants. Craig has certification and training in Invisalign and is currently on a mission to learn more about implantology by taking additional CE such as our Implant Pathway Course with Dr. Justin Moody.

On the podcast we discussed:

  • Craig’s passion for dental implants and CE
  • Comprehensive Lifetime Care and why it’s more than just the “fancy procedures”
  • The importance of developing a relationship with your patients
  • Breaking down the negative stigma of DSO’s
  • Advantages of joining a DSO regarding finances, experience and the overall quality of life
  • Why owning multiple dental practices isn’t as awarding as it sounds
  • How to decide whether you should join a DSO or buy your own practice
  • What stops people from wanting to join a DSO? 

You can find out more by clicking here



Jun 5, 2018

Join me in the latest episode of the T-Bone Speaks podcast where I speak with Dr. Holly Baller from Denver, Colorado.

Holly graduated from the University of Colorado in 2016 and is now working as an associate dentist in Denver. She’s a huge advocate for continued education with a strong passion and interest in pursuing implant dentistry and Myofunctional Therapy. Her reasoning for this is because she believes that this is where modern dentistry is heading, and there is massive potential there that she would like to tap into.

We discussed:

  • Holly’s unique situation working as an associate in a general dental practice AND an orthodontist practice
  • Benefits of Myobrace and how it’s used to align crooked teeth without braces
  • The current paradigm shift in modern dentistry towards airway treatments and why this is a good thing
  • The underlying issues that can cause orthodontic problems with your children’s teeth including soft tissue dysfunction, mouth breathing, and tongue issues
  • Importance of early treatment for children who are candidates for Myofunctional Therapy
  • What the Schwartz Appliance is and how it can be used to expand the arch and improve airways
  • Vital signs to look out for to help determine whether a patient can benefit from pre-orthodontic treatment
  • The necessary fees associated with Myofunctional Therapy
  • Healthy Start Vs Myobrace and the pros and cons of both appliances

You can listen to the full podcast episode by clicking here

May 29, 2018

On this week’s podcast episode of T-Bone Speaks, I continue my interview with Dr. Heath Brantley from “Wendall Family Dentistry”.

You can listen to Part 1 of this interview here

In Part 2 of our discussion, we talked about:

  • The many benefits of oral sedation
  • Importance of continuing education and why technology should be the focus of your next CE
  • The different ways you can use CEREC in your practice
  • Why you should build a practice based around YOU
  • Planning your vision for the future and how to prioritize your short-term, medium-term and long-term goals
  • The process of hiring a full-time associate
  • How to plan ahead and why you should take time to re-evaluate yourself

For more information on this episode visit


May 22, 2018

On this episode of the T-Bone Speaks Show, I sit down for an interview with Dr. Heath Brantley to discuss the importance of connecting with your patients and what it means to give them HOPE.

Dr. Heath Brantley graduated from dental school in 2013 and began working as an associate for two years. He always knew that he wanted to buy his own practice and despite the discouragement he received from others along the way, he remained focused and worked hard to follow his ambitions. It wasn’t long before he bought his own dental practice, “Wendall Family Dentistry” in his hometown of Wendall, NC.

On the podcast we discussed:

  • Heath’s journey from finishing dentistry school to working as an associate and how he came to open his own practice in his hometown of Wendall
  • Important characteristics to look for when you’re looking to buy a practice for the first time
  • Why seeking advice from an attorney is necessary when buying or selling a dental practice
  • How you can connect with your patients
  • An insight into laser dentistry technology and how Heath uses it in his practice
  • Giving your patients hope should be one of your top priorities as a dentist

For more information click here

May 15, 2018

On episode 10 of the T-Bone Speaks Show, I discuss the struggles of being a foreign graduate in the U.S with Dr. Ashish N. Kakadia.

Dr. Kakadia was born and raised in India and finished dental school in 2001. Ashish admits that he detested dental school in the beginning but that all changed when he relocated to the United States. He received his DDS from the University of Illinois at the Chicago College of Dentistry in 2008 and opened his private practice, ‘Modern Dentistry’ in Roswell, GA in 2009.

We discussed:

  • Ashish’s inspiring journey from studying dentistry in India to moving to the United States and opening his own private dental practice
  • Common struggles and hardships that many foreign graduates and dental practitioners face in today’s society
  • How to build a new practice from scratch and the importance of chasing your dreams
  • The importance of marketing and implementing an effective marketing strategy to help raise awareness for your business
  • Investing in high-tech machinery and equipment is worth the risk
  • Overcoming hardships and always striving to put your patient’s wellbeing and happiness before profit

Listen to the full podcast episode by clicking here.


May 8, 2018

On the latest episode of the T-Bone Speaks show, I talk with Dr. Kristina Palmer.

Kristina grew up in Michigan and later moved to Milwaukee to attend dental school at Marquette University. She graduated in 2005 and immediately knew she wanted to own her own dental practice. In 2012, those dreams were realized when she bought Kristina Palmer DDS.

We discussed:

  • The evolution of Kristina’s practice and how it has changed over the years
  • How to get started with sleep apnea
  • Marketing tips and learning how to market new services to your existing patients
  • Importance of having ‘procedure champions’ in your team
  • Implementing sleep apnea and other sleep dentistry services to your practice
  • Transitioning from student to teacher in regards to new procedures at your practice
  • Sleep as a team driven process and the low overhead costs of getting started
  • When you should bring on an associate to help ease the workload

If you would like to find out more, click here

May 1, 2018

In this week’s podcast episode of T-Bone Speaks, I welcome Dr. Suneet Bath to the show.

Suneet grew up in a small town in Washington State and graduated in 2001. He currently owns his own dental practice, Impressions Dentistry

We discussed:

  • The journey that led Suneet to buy his own dental practice and the challenges he faced as a new practice owner
  • Introducing modern technology to a dated dental practice and updating its procedures
  • Relocating and building a new practice
  • How to incorporate Invisalign to your practice
  • How to cut down Invisalign costs and deciding whether or not a fixed rate is for you
  • The health advantages of Invisalign
  • Importance of happiness if you want to achieve a successful practice

 To find out more, please click here

Apr 24, 2018

In this week’s episode of T-Bone Speaks, I sit down with Dr. Kyle McKinney from Hickory, North Carolina. Dr. Kyle McKinney is a member of the American Dental Association, North Carolina Dental Society and the Academy of General Dentistry. He recently purchased a new practice in Hickory, and he had some questions regarding how to grow his practice and introduce more procedures over time.

Here’s what we discussed:

  • The right time to hire an associate for your practice
  • How to add new procedures
  • How to find the right associate for the job
  • The associate pay structure
  • Managing overall growth of the practice and maintaining new patient flow

To find out more, click here.

Apr 17, 2018

On this week’s podcast episode of T-Bone Speaks, I discuss Oral Conscious Sedation and how it can help grow your practice with Dr. Brian McGue.

Brian is a general dentist in Chesterton, Indiana and specializes in providing all aspects of dentistry in a relaxed but informative environment. His practice is built on the constitution of ‘family,’ and this is fulfilled by treating each patient as a valuable member of an extended family. His practice provides a full range of dental services from simple teeth cleaning to root canals, wisdom teeth extractions, and implants. He always strives to give his patients “something to smile about,” and he certainly lives up to his outstanding reputation.

We discussed:

  • Growing your practice with conscious oral sedation
  • Safety measures and the importance of monitoring your patients throughout sedation
  • The difference between sleep dentistry and conscious sedation
  • The recommended dosage and medications used in dental sedation
  • How to safely reverse the effects of sedation medication
  • Brian McGue’s Oral Sedation Program course for dentists

To find out more about this podcast episode click here

Apr 10, 2018

On this week’s episode of T-Bone Speaks I talk to Dr. Brian Harris.

Brian is a Cosmetic Dentist in Phoenix, AZ known for his ability to create beautiful looking smiles but it’s HOW he communicates with his patients that has everybody talking. His creation of the Smile Virtual Consult has allowed people thousands of miles away get answers to their dental questions for free in an open, honest and convenient way. He has assembled a team of qualified cosmetic dentists from around the world to make this happen. He believes that the key to success in business is simple: “Ask people what they want, and find a way to make it happen.”

We discussed:

  • How virtual consultations work
  • The many benefits of virtual consultations
  • The patient response to virtual consultations
  • What you need from patients and the virtual consultation process
  • The secret to success with virtual consultations
  • The Smile Virtual Consult training course for dentists

To find out more about this podcast episode click here

Apr 3, 2018

In this week’s episode of T-Bone Speaks I meet with Dr Zach Meyer  from Clarksville, Tennessee.

Zach graduated in 2016 and joined his Dad’s practice as an associate directly out of school.

We discussed: 

  • Challenges with joining the family practice
  • Implementing cone beam technology and making it the standard of care in your office
  • Resistance to change
  • Dental implants and other opportunities with cone bean
  • The value of ongoing education
  • Setting clear expectations about compensation
  • Getting to know your team
  • Doing the numbers and setting daily and weekly goals

To find out more please click here.

Mar 27, 2018

Do you have questions about medical billing? Are you unsure whether medical billing is right for your practice? 

I get more questions about medical billing than anything else. It’s an area that is laden with much confusion and overwhelming information. My goal, in this week’s T-Bone speaks podcast, is to help dentists make a decision as to whether or not medical billing is right for their practice.

I invited Hootan Shahidi (President at Cross Over Dental Enterprises) to talk about medical billing, and here's what we discussed:

  • What practices medical billing is good for
  • The 3 most common challenges faced with medical billing
  • Does medical billing really work?
  • A very quick way to work out if medical billing would work in your practice
  • Procedures that can be billed to medical insurance
  • The benefits of medical billing
  • How to get started with medical billing

After listening to the podcast episode, I hope you feel a lot more informed about whether medical billing is right for you.

For more information on medical billing click here.

Mar 20, 2018

There are two hats that every dentist has to wear.

Hat number 1 is the dentist as an employee. Hat number 2 is the dentist as a leader.

Many people think that a leader is only the person who owns the practice. I think this is a misconception, and in my opinion whether you are an associate, a hospital dentist…or whatever your role may have, you always wear both hats.

All dentist are leaders, regardless of whether they own the practice. Plus, all dentists who own the practice still have a role as an employee in the practice.

In this podcast Chuck McKee and I explore the role of a dentist an employee – looking at developing your clinical skills, chairside manners and being part of a team.

We then explore the role of a dentist as a leader – looking at communications skills, personal branding, business leadership and working with team mates as a business leader (whether you are an owner or not). 

To find out more head to

Mar 5, 2018

3 Ways to Grow Your Dental Practice Show Notes


Whether you want more money, more time, or more personal satisfaction, growth is essential to meeting your goals with your dental practice. There are 3 ways that you can successfully grow your dental practice, and this podcast shows us the best routes for growth and increased revenue.


Option #1: Raising Fees

If you want to start making more money, you’ll need to take a look at your fees.


Raising your fees is accomplished in several ways. You can start by doing a fee analysis, negotiate your fees, look at average daily rates, and drop your worst contract—which results in more time to bring in patients who pay higher rates.


Option #2: Seeing More Patients

I typically don’t advocate seeing more patients. It increases overhead and goes against everything that I teach. However, sometimes you must choose this option if your practice is struggling.


If you choose to see more patients, it’s imperative to be very efficient with your schedule. You’ll also want to update old tools and technologies to help procedures go smoothly as possible. This is about finding the sweet spot on how much time you spend on procedures.


Option #3: Do More Dentistry

Doing more dentistry is what my training is all about. This is a different mindset over simply seeing more patients, and it’s a completely different (and better) way to grow your dental practice.


The top 4 ways to do more dentistry includes:


  • Investing in a high-quality digital camera
  • Giving patients the opportunity to say yes to the best philosophy
  • Start adopting the quadrant method
  • Be an advocate to your patient


Expanded procedures that will help put your dental practice on the fast track to exponential growth. These procedures include sleep apnea, adult orthodontics, dental implants, and oral sedation.


[.01-.29] Intro

[0:30] The definition of practice growth and 3 ways to grow your dental business

[1:45] Raising fees

[11:30] Seeing more patients

[17:55] Do More Dentistry

[23:00] Expanded Procedures

[26:47] Why you should include expanded procedures and how to get a written action plan to move your dental business forward

[29:15] Outro

Feb 24, 2018

I'm coming back March 5, 2018 with weekly episodes!

I wanted to quickly share with you some insight into what will be coming, why I went away, and what you can do to help keep the podcast going.

I struggle doing anything without my whole heart in it.  Furthermore, I'm "IN IT TO WIN IT".  I simply got bored and wasn't getting enough direct feedback about the podcast.  It wasn't until people started asking me about the podcast when I was speaking that I began to realize the impact it was having.

So I need you to do me a favor.

1.  be more interactive.  comment on the facebook posts for the podcast, youtube posts for the podcast.

2.  be more interactive.  submit questions and feedback via the website -

3.  spread the message.  help us become one of the most impactful (that doens't mean the most listened to or most downloaded) podcast out there.  this comes from you sharing the podcast with your colleagues, on your facebook groups, on your facebook profile, telling people about, grabbing their phones and subscribing them to the podcast, etc.

4.  apply for ask tbone and/or mentoring calls.  new is going to be my monthly coaching call.  apply on and come on the show to get advice, ask questions, and talk shop with me on the show.

I look forward to hearing from you and spending time with you each week starting March 5, 2018.