May 28, 2024

New Ways Technology Is Improving Dentistry For Patients and Dental Practices

5 min read

Technology is transforming industries all across the world at an unprecedented pace, and one of those industries is the dental industry. Not only are improvements in dental technology helping to streamline practices for dental businesses and make them more profitable, but it’s also improving the experience for the patient thanks to less invasive and more advanced treatment and scanning opportunities. Technology can affect your health negatively in some ways, however when it comes to dentistry, it’s making big improvements to patients. We’re going to introduce some of the most impressive pieces of technology that the dental industry is now able to utilise. 

5D Scanning

Firstly we have 5D scanning, a type of technology that has truly transformed the dental industry. 5D scans can be used in consultations and along the treatment to record 3D images of the teeth, mouth and gums, as well as using intraoral scanning and photography to screen the structure of the teeth in real time. This technology can also detect issues invisible to the naked eye! As well as identifying where a patient’s oral health currently is, the 5D scans can be used to create before and after images for patients based on different treatments. 

 

For example, if  a patient is interested in Invisalign technology can take the before images of a patient’s smile, identify where teeth would need to be moved to and the different retainers needed to do that, then produce an after image and also images to go with each of the steps of alignment. As a result, the patient can see the full journey, then also see an image of exactly what their teeth could look like post treatment. Not only does this simplify the process for the dentist, but it also is fantastic in terms of converting people interested in a treatment into patients. There is no guessing what someone’s smile might look like, you can show them the exact results they will be able to achieve. 

 

With 5D scanning, there is also no need for uncomfortable dental molds which are renowned for being unpleasant, another benefit for the patient! Overall, there are so many benefits for both the patient and the dentist when it comes to 5D scanning. This isn’t cheap technology (in the UK it’s around £20,000) , however in terms of how effective it can be in showing patients how fantastic their smile could look, it can be a very cost effective investment long term. 

3D Printing

3D printing has become extremely popular in all areas of medicine, including dentistry, as it can use images produced by the 5D scanners to create a wide range of different products for patients. This results in increased accuracy and efficiency, ensuring patients achieve the best results as well as saving time for dentists. 

 

3D printers can produce orthodontic models, however the more advanced machinery can also manufacture highly accurate and natural looking crowns, dental bridges, retainers and dentures. This is changing the game in dentistry, helping to cut costs significantly. Whether you choose to invest in a 3D printer or work with a lab who has one, you save a lot of time and money, whilst also providing your patients with excellent results. Simply send over the 5D scans and you will have fantastic results. 

 

Digital Implant Planning

Digital implant planning is another form of dental technology which is transforming the industry. This is a type of software that can plan a full report of the type, size and position of the implant to access the best and safest results for patients. As dental implants go so deep into the jaw, it’s so important that the positioning is spot on to avoid damage to any nerves, which digital implant planning can help to do. It looks into complexities such as bone mass and bone density as well as important structures around the teeth, to then simulate where the implants should be placed for both the safest and best results. Decades ago there was quite a lot of guess work in dental implants, however digital implant planning allows for better results, more accurate results and also a more confident patient through the process. 

 

Automated Booking Systems

Whilst this isn’t related to dentistry in isolation, the automated booking systems which have become more popular in the last few years have transformed dentistry. It saves a huge amount of time for admin teams in dental practices, as well as improving the experience for the user. Whilst not everyone will want to use automated booking systems, giving people the option (which many people will take up) is important to adapt for the modern consumer. Also, being able to easily change bookings without needing to call up a practice is important for people today, so having this function will also help. Dentistry should be all about simplifying every step of the process for patients, starting at the very beginning with automated booking systems. Work with a well recommended company to get this set up to suit your practice and patients specifically, as although you can get a one-size-fits-all version, it’s best to be able to tailor it to exactly what you need as a dental practice. 

 

Lasers 

Another newer form of dental technology that is transforming the dental industry are lasers. Lasers are now commonly being used in general dentistry in order to remove decay and reshape gums, as well as in some cases, performing root canals. They can also be used to perform biopsies and remove lesions in the mouth if necessary. There are different types of dental lasers, with soft tissue lasers being for procedures that involve the gums, with hard tissue lasers being used for procedures involving the teeth, such as root canals. Dental lasers are an extremely diverse type of technology to have, with increased precision and accuracy in a range of different treatments. 

 

Final Thoughts

Technology has very much changed the dental industry for the better over the last decade, so it’s important that as a dental practice, to remain competitive, you should invest in this technology wherever possible. It improves the experience for the patient significantly, with better results, more comfortable procedures and less invasive options for treatments, as well as being a long term cost effective option for the practice itself. Whether you’re a dentist in Milton Keynes, Manchester or Mayfair, patients are increasingly expecting a more streamlined experience, which dental technology can provide for them. Dental technology enables you to save time and money, as well as improve the experience for your patients, so put together an investment plan now to move towards positive changes for the future. So, look no further and find different ways to increase funds for investment, then you won’t look back as a dental practice. 

 

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