Are you prepared for the post COVID-19 world?

dentistry post cover-19

This article is sponsored content is brought to you by Dental Monitoring.

For a year, our team put in countless hours to prepare for ACAS2020, a major dental symposium with 700+ attendees. For weeks, our team fielded numerous enquiries from international and interstate guests as to whether Sydney was safe given the devastating bushfires that ravaged the country. A week before the event, one of our Keynote speakers from Hong Kong advised us that she would not be attending. Similarly, delegates from Asia advised the same thing. Overnight, we lost many delegates. 

Nevertheless, the event went ahead in February and was a major success. But the next four weeks saw a dramatic escalation of events. COVID-19 was no longer ‘overseas’, it was here. Things happened that we could never have even imagined. Our generation had not seen anything like this. Given our technology, knowledge, and connectedness, we as a world got cocky that we were immune to such disruption. 

The post COVID-19 era will facilitate a massive reset, it will foster innovation and invention worldwide. This catastrophic pandemic will produce opportunities and hardships, but the one constant will be the necessity for CHANGE. As we have found out during lockdown, if we have no patients, we cannot do dentistry. Our ability to innovate should not only be focused on dentistry, but more importantly, how we better serve our patients. We must fundamentally change our mindset from a reactionary health care service provider to be a proactive knowledge and service providers.

But at the forefront of all thoughts is—what do our patients want? They want affordable, convenient, transparent, and accountable services and do not forget pain-free. They want whiter, straighter smiles and they want them for life!

 And the exciting news is we already have the answer. Technology.

The likes of intraoral scanners, digital photography, radiology, and Artificial Intelligence implementation will accelerate and reinvent how we collate, interpret, assist, or complete diagnosis, treatment planning, virtual simulation of this new untapped data. This will fast track our ability to enhance dentistry services by creating new pathways to communicate, execute, and systemize dentistry from now on.

Personally, I and several of my esteemed colleagues would have undoubtedly struggled during COVID-19 without Dental Monitoring™. Through it, I did virtual consults, virtual treatment monitoring via apps, photos, and videos which meant we never lost continuity. The patients were so appreciative of the continued level of care, it was truly a practice builder for us. So much so, the majority of our new patient consults via SmileMate asked if Dental Monitoring was included in their treatment plan.

I imagine the use of the Dental Monitoring app to monitor hygiene and whitening for patients and then redefine the old world approach of six monthly recalls to subscription base model where the app provided by us using AI, alerts the patients as to the best time to seek a checkup and clean. This will all be done with collective data interpretation using technology at the patients’ convenience.

Dental Monitoring has the incredible AI to help us make a refined decision on when a case is tracking well or when we need to slow down. It tells us when an attachment is missing, and patients love using the chat function. But most importantly, in a treatment that is futile without compliance, it provides an objective and interactive assessment method while promoting the Hawthorne effect. The possibilities of this technology in dentistry are in its infancy, yet already so great. The decision is yours. Either use this time to keep moving forward or watch as the rest of the profession leaves you behind.  

Written by Dr John Hagiliassis

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