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How Technology Helps Dental Industry: The Evolution of Digital Dentistry
HIPAA | 4.05 MIN READ
Digital dentistry is the merging of technology and dental care to produce more accessible, efficient and individualized treatment plans. The use of digital diagnostic tools, cloud-based software, and artificial intelligence are just a few examples of how the field of dentistry is evolving as technology continues to advance. Dentists who have integrated these principles into their practices report reduced risk factors for oral diseases which means higher precision and thus higher level of patient’s safety. In this blog post you will explore the different ways technology has revolutionized dental care, how it has made checkups more convenient for patients and where digital dentistry is headed next.
In this article you will find:
Dental care has evolved over time
Before the invention of modern dental care, people turned to ancient remedies and folk practices to treat oral diseases and promote healthy teeth. The use of chewing sticks, minerals and metals - even the ashes from certain plants - were common practices. However, many of these treatments were more harmful than helpful and often caused more harm than good. Medical advancements in the late 19th century brought significant change. For example, the discovery of anesthesia being one of the most influential and groundbreaking advancements. Today, dentists across the globe have a wide selection of modern tools and practices at hand. All of these allow them to provide more efficient and tailored dental care.
Digital X-rays and electronic records
Digital X-rays allow dentists to take an image of a tooth and determine if a filling is missing, a tooth is cracked or if there is a need for a root canal. While traditional X-rays can expose teeth to about the same amount of radiation as a dental exam, digital X-rays are considered safer. While digital X-rays don’t emit any radiation, they do require the use of a sensor that converts the X-ray into an image that can be analyzed by the dentist. These sensors are placed on the patient’s teeth and the information is then sent to the dentist through a computer. Digital X-rays are also more convenient for dentists, as they eliminate the need to develop and store X-rays on film. This process took a few minutes and required the patient to sit in a dark room, holding their breath. Digital X-rays also provide an added benefit for patients - they can be viewed and shared online through a secure web portal. This allows patients to view their X-rays at home, while simultaneously allowing dentists to track their progress and treatment plan.
3D imaging and virtual reality
New technology has enabled dentists to go beyond two dimensions and create digital 3D models of a patient’s teeth. These models allow dentists to explore the teeth in 3D and better visualize areas that may need work, such as cavities or gum disease. This technology is also being used to create immersive virtual reality (VR) experiences that allow patients to explore their teeth as if they were looking in a mirror. VR allows patients to see what their teeth look like before, during and after dental procedures.
Digital solutions for dental compliance
With all these technological innovations, we should draw specific attention to the software products that make dental operations easier. As all dental clinics in the US and not only, need to stay OSHA and HIPAA compliant, dental compliance solutions came into way to make that easier. They take care of everything: law changes, compliance updates, employee training, wallowing you to operate efficiently and stay legally aligned. They give you access to dental training courses that cover various specialty-focused topics. Those ready-made training courses help you implement the right practices to ensure that your clinic stays compliant. But you need to consider one important fact before switching to this kind of solution- it is the level of expertise of your chosen solution. But what defines the level of expertise? It is the experience of compliance advisors and the years of market presence that comprises it as a whole. As a perfect example of it, Smart Training holds 25+ years of experience in delivering compliance training and is an industry leader with its professionally developed courses.
Artificial Intelligence in dental care
As the field of artificial intelligence continues to grow, the technology is also making its way into dental care. Artificial intelligence has been used to analyze X-rays, create 3D models and even predict the risk of tooth decay. This technology is already being used in the dental office to assist with treatment planning, scheduling, and detecting cavities. While many of these advancements are still being tested and explored, some dentists are beginning to implement AI technology into their practices.
Convenient ways to stay on track with visits
Digital dentistry has also made it easier for patients to keep track of their dental appointments. Many dentists have integrated technologies like iCal and email into their practices, which allows patients to set reminders, request appointments, and view their upcoming appointments online. This is especially helpful for patients who may have trouble remembering when their next appointment is, or for those who need to travel a fair distance to reach their local dental office. There are also a number of apps available to track your dental health, including brushing, flossing, and even music preferences. These apps make it easier to monitor your progress and help you stay on track with your dental visits.
To sum up
While dental care has come a long way, there is still room for improvement. New technologies and advancements are being made every day to make dental care more accessible, efficient, and individualized. Digital dentistry has revolutionized the field and has allowed patients to enjoy more convenient and effective treatment plans. If you are a dental clinic, make sure you are keeping up with technology and have integrated these digital advancements into your practices to offer your patients the best experience possible.
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