Exploring Current Trends in Global Teledentistry
By Space Coast Daily // January 21, 2022
Teledentistry allows oral health professionals to offer their services to more people than ever before. Disparities in affordability and access to dentists mean that some parts of the population are more likely to experience tooth decay or less likely to have their teeth straightened.
Poor oral care contributes to diabetes, heart disease, and obesity; increases social isolation; impacts school attendance in children and makes employment opportunities difficult in adults.
Several players in the global teledentistry market are helping to address issues in dental care, including quality, cost efficiency, and access. Telecommunications and information technology are both vital areas of technology, allowing dentists and orthodontists to increase public awareness about dental issues and to address these issues.
Globally, several trends are helping the growth of the teledentistry market. These include the demand for early diagnosis, preventative care, cost-effective dental treatments, and the increasingly aging population.
Current Teledentistry Trends Benefit the Patient and Dentist
With teledentistry, making a dental assessment is far more accessible than ever because it is real-time patient care. Patients can take videos or photos of their teeth and send them to the dentist to examine and compare their dental records. These can even be forwarded to other specialists for further assessment and faster referrals.
When required, the dentist can prescribe the medication to treat a dental issue. The patient can immediately start taking the antibiotics or painkillers until they get a physical appointment.
Teledentistry appointments allow dentists and orthodontists to see more patients in a day. Monitoring dental treatments is more cost-effective, especially teeth straightening treatments that require frequent in-office visits.
Patients and dental practitioners benefit from the technology to improve dental care delivery and dental practice workflows.
These are the most popular current trends in global teledentistry:
Dental Management Software
The tools for effectively delivering dental services are just as necessary as dental care. Dental management software allows the collection of electronic patient data and its exchange. A sophisticated teledentistry practice needs to keep dental records, create billing, schedule appointments, and complete reports.
Imaging software allows dentists to better digital view images captured through digital radiography and other devices. Technology makes it easier for imaging software to work together with dental management software, ensuring all information is available immediately when required.
Clear Aligners and Teledentistry
Today, two of the most common teeth problems are dental caries and misaligned teeth. Teeth straightening treatments are definitely among the top trends to emerge from teledentistry. As opposed to traditional braces, clear aligners have made it possible for more people, especially adults and teenagers, with misaligned teeth to straighten their teeth discreetly, conveniently, cost-effectively, and quickly.
Clear aligners are part of a growing market closely following and implementing the latest teledentistry trends to meet consumer expectations. Some of the most popular companies providing at-home clear aligners include Byte, AlignCo, Candid, and SmileDirectClub.
According to Smile Prep, the authoritative reviewer of clear aligner teeth straightening treatments, several clear aligners are effectively meeting consumer needs right now. Ther review these according to treatment quality, speed, discreetness, and customer service.
At-home teeth straightening clear aligners emerged after patents for the in-office Invisalign clear aligners expired. Clear aligners are cost-effective; some brands are up to 70% cheaper than Invisalign because they remove the middleman from the treatments. Their customers are also paying less because at-home teeth straightening is not reliant on expensive visits to dental offices. At-home clear aligner treatments are also faster on average than in-office teeth straightening.
Patients do have the option of seeing a dentist for their first consultation, but usually, most just need to send photos of impressions of their teeth. Treatment is based on these impressions and worked out by the clear aligner company’s dentist or orthodontist. The customer receives a complete kit with clear aligners and a treatment timeline.
Clear aligners are mostly suitable for less severe teeth misalignments; more severe cases need in-office treatments. This is a more convenient option for people with busy schedules or anxiety.
Teledentistry might have taken a while to become mainstream, but it certainly provides dental care professionals and educators with several opportunities. So far, two of the most popular global trends to emerge are treating dental patients in rural areas and teeth straightening treatments with clear aligners. Technological breakthroughs in all areas of dentistry promise even greater future potential for the use of teledentistry, making it easier for dentists to provide convenient services for their patients.