Digital transformation has taken the world by storm. It is the integration of computer-based technologies into all areas of an industry, bringing about a fundamental revolution in the processes of its operation and value.
dental care There is no exception. It is the branch of medicine that specializes in the diagnosis, prevention, management and treatment of oral diseases. In fact, digital solutions in this field are nothing new as dental professionals have been using computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) to take dental impressions since 1984.
It has been almost 40 years since Dr. Francois Duret first applied CAD/CAM principles to optimize the dental treatment process. Let’s look at the benefits of digitally advanced dentistry in this year, 2023.
Many organizations can now be reached virtually. For example, Skygate DentalA dental clinic headquartered in Brisbane, Australia, has a website that allows patients to check doctor availability and easily book online.
A website helps organizations reduce these calls and instead increase internal productivity. It also reduces the time patients spend contacting and waiting at the clinic, ultimately resulting in a better customer experience.
Time and cost savings
Dental clinics can reduce time with digital solutions, not only in customer service, but also in their dental procedures. Digitally enhanced dentistry is more precise, which benefits both dentists and patients.
Use digital intraoral scanners as an example. It can provide more accurate information of teeth structure after only 1-2 minutes of scanning, which is much faster than other traditional dental 3D machines.
Digital intraoral scans are also cleaner. They eliminate bubbles and distortions, which are often common in traditional impressions. With improved accuracy, they reduce turnaround time and eliminate retake costs. Even if a process has to be redone, digital solutions can help streamline the process and reduce chair time.
More efficient results and processes
Digital solutions can also eliminate other errors and uncertainties typically caused by human limitations. The more accurate the results at each workflow step, the more efficient the dental results and procedures.
In addition to the digital intraoral scanner, another digital innovation renowned for its accuracy is the more advanced CAD/CAM tools, Like dental procedures, improved accuracy results in reduced wait times and reduced or zero outsourcing costs.
For example, recent CAD/CAM software can automatically remove and rescan impressions, even if it is a complex matter. In restorative dentistry, they can also provide more dimensional stable restorations with a natural look.
Advanced Patient-Dentist and Lab Communication
Digital solutions can improve communication channels between dentists and their patients. For example, using real-time 3D imagery, patients can easily visualize their oral health status and get a comprehensive understanding of their treatment progress and outcomes.
Employing digital impression systems ensures that patients receive accurate, expertly crafted impressions. This will likely lead to greater patient engagement and make them more likely to move forward with recommended treatment plans.
Furthermore, this advanced communication extends beyond just the patient-dentist dynamic. It also expands collaboration between dentists and laboratories. Depending on the specific case, digital solutions empower both clinics and laboratories to fine-tune aspects such as speed, user-friendliness, or cost-effectiveness, streamlining the workflow between them.
Better patient experience and comfort
As mentioned earlier, the increased accuracy, efficiency and productivity of digitally enhanced dentistry can also benefit patients, especially when it comes to improved experience and comfort.
For example, they often turn away from things like traditional effects materials alginate Or polyvinyl siloxane (PVS) but not with the intraoral scanner. Others may still report gagging or discomfort during intraoral scanning, but this is often due to their anxiety.
Good return on investment (ROI)
The benefits of digital optimization in dentistry generally result in significantly reduced outcome quality, chair time and material costs. All of these can improve competitiveness and create opportunities for dental clinics and laboratories.
Additionally, these digital solutions in dentistry yield immediate financial returns. For example, with better treatments, there will be greater patient acceptance and new patient visits, all of which contribute to a higher return on investment (ROI).
It is common to have trust issues with digital dentistry solutions. Most people are afraid of anything unusual or new. However, once they hear positive feedback from other patients, they will likely commit to a treatment plan and even return for visits. It will not take much time until their trust and confidence in digitalization increases to a great extent.
Once these patients have a comfortable digital solution experience, they will bring other patients as well, and the cycle continues. In business these processes are called customer feedback And referrals, which can drive more revenue for optimized ROI.
Digital transformation has significantly enhanced the overall experience for patients, dentists, and laboratories. More importantly, it is an effective way to meet today’s digital revolution and high-performance culture, where everything is expected to be efficient and optimized. In this sense, incorporating digital solutions in dentistry is the only way to stay ahead of the competition.