Now we are firmly in the era of COVID-19, dental professionals are looking for solutions to allow us to monitor our patients while minimizing clinical appointments. While this is a new concept for many dentists and their offices, this is something that has been accessible in orthodontics for the past few years.
Practicing in a remote area, I have patients traveling great distances to see me for an appointment. Some traveling hours to get to our office; I was looking for ways to help minimize the amount of traveling my patients required at the same time reducing the number of office visits to my practice. Additionally, adult patients seeking orthodontic treatment is a large part of my practice. Their challenging work schedules make seeing them on a regular basis a barrier for treatment. Enter the concept of remote monitoring patients using teledentistry.
In 2018, I was first exposed to remote monitoring technology when a colleague of mine showed me the potential of using novel artificial intelligence (AI) technology pioneered by the company Dental Monitoring. I was instantly intrigued.
I was amazed with the versatility of the incredible use of AI technology and saw the large number of dental conditions that can be monitored using the Dental Monitoring App (currently over 180). I began utilizing remote monitoring with my clear aligner patients to give me the ability to see the fit of every aligner, not just the aligner they were wearing at their office visit. Using the reports generated from each scan, I was able to compare my personal assessment of the patient’s photos to the software generated reports. I was fascinated to see the minor details the software would detect in the photos.
Working with my patients in my dental practice here in California, we have been able to utilize the software to accelerate many areas of treatment even when they were traveling around the world! With being able to detect small problems in the fit of the aligners as they begin, I can make recommendations and resolve problems before the aligners begin to stop-tracking. This helps to reduce the number of revisions and refinements with my aligner cases. The patients are pleased with the interaction they have between appointments and feel comfortable on their summer cross-country road trips or European vacation!
Now with the onset of COVID-19 and having to close my office except for emergency treatment, remote monitoring has allowed me to leverage the benefits of technology to progress my patients treatment. This is what has set the Dental Monitoring experience apart for me and my patients. I have had the ability to provide ongoing continuous care in a time when a visit to my office is not possible.
Are you interested in getting into clear aligner therapy but unsure if they really work? Thinking about using the time at home to learn clinical procedures? Make sure you check out www.LearnAligners.com, an online course covering diagnosis and treatment planning, how to get started with clear aligner laboratories, the differences in technology, step-by-step clinical procedures from taking records to delivering aligners and monitoring your patients until case completion. The course covers the basics to getting you started with clear aligner treatment using traditional and digital methods for recording taking, step-by-step clinical and laboratory workflows, insurance/billing and growing your clear aligner practice through innovative marketing strategies. The clear aligner course is eligible for up to 12 hours of continuing education credits.