The Main Issues Facing Modern Dental Practices
The fierce competition in the industry makes modern dental clinics struggle for the place in the market. Standing out becomes a need, and the awareness of details becomes essential when it comes to establishing a successful dental practice. Main issues of modern dentistry are:
Attracting new patients. The clinic must develop as a brand and invest in its image and popularity. Expanding the range of services, positioning as family dentistry, finding and promoting the features that distinguish the clinic in the market are possible ways to achieve the goal.
Increasing the annual profits. The continuous problem where the number of services provided depends on the amount of money invested in advertising these services.
Implementing the newest treatment strategies and modern equipment. With the development of dental technology, the need for updating the equipment for dental care is permanent, but the difficulty is the amount of investment required.
Searching for cost-effective solutions for moving the dental practice to the next level remains the most acute issue. Occupational health problems also need consideration. In the field of dentistry, technology is multifunctional and vital.
The Art and Science of Dental Laboratory Technician’s Profession
The profession has emerged and is developing directly through the innovations dentistry is using now. The challenges facing dentists are continually changing. Long ago, it was just the relief from acute pain, but modern dentists need to develop strategies for observation, care, and treatment. Their goals are to maintain the health of the teeth for a long time and achieve the optimal aesthetic appearance of the patient’s smile. Dental technicians deal with the second point – they restore or create a healthy and appealing look of the dentition and gums.
There are two main fields of the profession: restorative dentistry and orthodontics. New technologies make it possible to work in each of these industries. And computer knowledge and programming are not additional skills for a modern dental technician, but mandatory professional qualities. The rapid evolution of the branch causes a need for continuous education for dental technicians.
Digital Dentistry and CAD/CAM Technologies
Digital dentistry multiples the efficiency of visiting the dentist. The complex of methods enables the instant creation of prosthesis. Using intra-oral scanners and technology like CEREC allows getting the artificial teeth without many try-ons, multiple visits, and weeks of waiting.
Computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing (CAD and CAM) are the most significant digital advancement of new dental technology. The innovations enable creating custom orthodontic devices, 3D modeling, and 3D scanning. The tooth form may be reproduced preciously, and the implant looks quite natural. They are also tools for manufacturing optimization and may save time and human resources in creating prostheses, devices, and details.
The design and manufacturing technologies integrate into in-office and laboratory systems. Enabling the new precision of restorative dental structures, CAD and CAM represent the future of making prostheses and orthodontics. And it’s not about 3D anymore; it’s 4Dprinting as of today.
Dentistry in 2020 – Personalized Dental Products
One of the central patients’ fears of the past was always connected with the doctor’s doing something wrong. In the era of information, we began to choose the dentists more carefully and pay more and more attention to the professional’s ability to observe and treat us based on our individual peculiaritіes. Medicine makes a considerable step towards the patients’ needs through new technologies. Personalized dental products are one of the top trends of 2020. A brush or toothpaste, especially for the needs of people with individual teeth and gum conditions, give people the feeling that their problems are understood and solved, which is not less important than a healthy mouth.
The personalized dental approach involves orthodontics, as well. By taking into account the patient’s anamnesis, especially genetics, dental professionals can more purposefully influence the problem and get better outcomes. In the case of family orthodontics, the successful treatment of senior family members allows developing the best preventive strategy for the next generation.
Teledentistry and Prevention Strategies
The culture of preventing severe tooth diseases is more than a trend. But it is emphasized this year with teledentistry modules and online appointment booking. Constant communication with your doctor and the ability to send photos or videos of the problem may give patients a sense of care and protection, and give clinics more trust and more well-deserved recommendations.
The technology allows contacting a dental professional to people with special needs and older adults. During the COVID-19 pandemic, such kind of remote consulting has become essential for many people all over the world. Teledentistry turned out to be helpful not only for early prevention but also for diagnostic and treatment strategy development in cases of a dental emergency. Furthermore, it is a modern way of attracting new patients.
Society responds to the innovation dentistry is implementing at the legislative level: in January 2020, the law came into force to protect the patients’ rights in teledentistry practice.
“Specific patient protection requirements include:
- Providing the treating dentist’s name, license number and dental board contact information,
- Review of a patient’s most recent dental X-rays prior to beginning orthodontic treatment,
- A patient examination, including completion of medical and dental history, diagnosis and treatment plan and,
- Recourse for the patient to report to the dental board incidents of treatment that fall below the standard of care, even if the patient has signed an arbitration clause or nondisclosure agreement” – Dimensions of Dental Hygiene.
American Dental Association also has a specific policy on teledentistry.
Attention to oral care and dental health caused the cascade of innovations in the field during the last decades. Now, none’s going to be surprised with an electric toothbrush, and the technology is moving forward. The smart brush aims to teach people to brush their teeth correctly. It’s equipped with sensors that record your movements and the time spent, analyze them, and send the information to an app on your smartphone. It’s an engaging and effective prevention technology that helps establish oral hygiene habits. An attractive look and an organized promotion turn smart toothbrushes into the desired product.
Cloud storage and cloud backup
This is illogical, but less than half of doctors in the United States use cloud computing for data storage and operation.
But in other fields of medicine, cloud technologies are widely used in practice management systems giving clinics all the benefits of quick access and operability of patient records.
Using cloud dental software appropriately, the dentists can grow their practice and feel free from micromanagement.
Better Doctors’ practice, Better Patients’ Experience
Needless to say that the patients’ attitude to dentistry has changed dramatically with the new methods of treatment, anesthesia, and the new accessibility of dental services. But the patients are not the only ones who experience the improvements.
The safe work conditions and improvement of dental practice organizations are also a significant field for development employing technology. The primary sources of health threats for dentists are still related to injuries, the toxicity of materials, stress, and infections.
And the main problems remain:
- Percutaneous Exposure Incidents
- Musculoskeletal Disorders
- Respiratory Disorders
Appreciating the work of doctors, clinics must take care of their health protection. Using the innovative technology in dentistry can improve the outcomes of treatment for patients and make the working conditions for doctors safer. For example, occupational health managing software can help reduce stress and maintain healthy dental health professionals’ productivity. Inventing the new materials of better quality and safety for the environment can also change dentists’ working conditions.
Imagining the Future of Dentistry
Modern dentistry may seem fantastic compared to the early 2000s.
There are many reasons to predict further growth of technology implementation. The nearest future of dentistry is connected with:
- augmented reality,
- IoT devices (e.g. intra-oral camera),
- digitization of imaging and x-ray equipment,
- virtual reality,
- the development of teledentistry,
- laser dental surgery,
- development and invention of new materials.
All the means of technology dentistry aim to make dental services more convenient to provide and more comfortable for the patients, with a positive long-term effect.
The future of dentistry begins today, with the involvement of more and more innovations in medical practice. Technological support is a must-have for a modern dental clinic to keep in the market confidently. When choosing a software development company for cooperation, pay attention to dentistry experience and the ability to implement all the necessary solutions to your business. Empeek’s expertise allows dental software development from scratch and can become the guide to the successful practice enhanced by custom dental software.